Wisconsin will receive less Pfizer vaccine doses than expected, federal officials indicate

NOW: Wisconsin will receive less Pfizer vaccine doses than expected, federal officials indicate

MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Gov. Tony Evers and state health officials on Friday, Dec. 18, called on the federal government to allocate more Pfizer vaccine to Wisconsin as the state was informed yesterday Wisconsin will only be receiving 35,100 doses of Pfizer, which is much less than expected after the initial doses allocated this week 49,725. Wisconsin has been hard hit by COVID-19 and does not have ability to enact statewide mitigation measures due to ongoing litigation.

“This is unacceptable. Wisconsin citizens deserve the vaccine the federal government promised,” said Gov. Evers. “Our healthcare workers and long-term care residents need this vaccine that is ready and available. We call on the federal government to send us more vaccine without delay.”

According to a news release from Gov. Evers' office, in addition to asking for its fair share of vaccine, Wisconsin officials also called on the federal government to provide clarity on COVID-19 vaccine allocations. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services, Wisconsin National Guard, and Wisconsin Emergency Management have all been working around the clock to allocate and distribute vaccine throughout the state of Wisconsin. Currently, the federal government informs states of their allocation late in the week for the next week’s shipment. Planning logistics and allocation with only a few days’ notice at a time makes the work incredibly challenging and forecasting timelines impossible. Hospitals and clinics have been anxiously awaiting these doses to help protect their staff that are providing care to Wisconsin residents.

Wisconsin has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic and healthcare staffing shortages have been challenging during the pandemic and continue across the state. As of today, 451,676 Wisconsinites have been diagnosed with COVID-19 since March. Seventeen counties are experiencing critically high case activity and statewide hospital bed availability is at 13 percent and 36 percent of hospitals in Wisconsin are anticipating critical staffing shortages within the next week.

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