NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. (AP/WSVN) — Four federal mass vaccination sites are coming to Florida, including one at Miami Dade College’s North Campus in Northwest Miami-Dade, officials said Friday.
Miami, Tampa, Orlando and Jacksonville will be the locations of the new Community Vaccine Centers, according to a White House news release.
The new sites are being made possible by a partnership between the federal government and the state.
The cities and locations were selected based on their proximity to vulnerable populations and officials estimate that the four centers will give up to 12,000 shots a day in total.
The other three locations are TGT Poker & Racebook in Tampa, Valencia Community College in Orlando, and Gateway Town Center in Jacksonville.
Starting March 3, the sties will be open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Each location will be able to administer 2,000 vaccines daily, but there will also be two mobile sites that will be used to vaccinate underserved communities in the area. Each of those mobile sites will be able to conduct 500 vaccinations, bringing the total of inoculations to 3,000 per site per day.
So far, just over 3.7 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered in Florida. Since the pandemic began nearly a year ago, more than 1.8 million Floridians have been infected, and nearly 30,000 people have died.
According to the White House, Miami-Dade County was identified as one of nine counties in the state with significantly underserved or marginalized populations.
Here are the numbers they referenced for Miami-Dade County:
- There is an 18% poverty rate.
- 86.6% of the population are minorities.
- 10.1% of the population has a disability.
- 15.6% of the population is over 65 years old.
In a statement issued Friday, U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., wrote that the MDC site will “make the vaccine more accessible and convenient to receive for the people who need it the most … Keeping them healthy and safehelps keep us all safe. This is literally the shot in the arm that our county needs.”
On Friday, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried announced that her agency is launching a bilingual vaccine education campaign to encourage COVID-19 vaccination among the state’s farmworkers. She noted that people in the agricultural community are among the most at risk for dying from COVID-19, according to a recent University of California study.
Right now, Florida has made the vaccines available only to medical workers and people over 65.
But that didn’t stop two women in their thirties from dressing up as grannies in Orlando in an attempt to get shots.
Dr. Raul Pino from the Florida Department of Health in Orange County said the pair was busted when they tried to get their second shot on Wednesday at the Orange County Convention Center, Click Orlando reported.
Pino said the people administering the vaccines noticed the women “looked funny” and stopped them before they could get the shots. The women were issued trespass warnings from the local sheriff’s department.
To pre-register at one of the federal sites, click here.
Anyone with questions and concerns about the coronavirus can call the Florida Department of Health’s 24-hour hotline at 1-866-779-6121.
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