Vaccine Offered to All Florida Nursing Home Residents, Staff by End of Month: DeSantis

The state has received about 1.7 million first doses total and has administered about 1.25 million, DeSantis said

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The COVID-19 vaccine will be offered to all residents and staff of Florida's nursing homes by the end of January, Gov. Ron DeSantis said.

DeSantis made the announcement during a news conference at at River Garden Hebrew House for the Aged in Jacksonville.

The governor said about 97% of River Garden's residents have been vaccinated.

The state has nearly 4,000 long term care and assisted living facilities.

Florida followed federal recommendations in starting vaccinations first for front-line medical workers plus residents and staff of nursing homes in mid-December.

DeSantis said about 22% of the state's seniors age 65 and up have received the vaccine as of Monday, and said about 70% of the state's doses are going to seniors.

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"We have done more senior vaccinations 65 and up than any state in the country and it's not even close," DeSantis said.

The state has received about 1.7 million first doses total and has administered about 1.25 million, DeSantis said.

The governor said most of the doses in the state that have been reportedly unused are 2nd doses, which are administered three weeks after the first. He said the state has received about 964,000 2nd doses and administered around 157,000, but said he expects that figure to "change dramatically" as more people get their second shot.

DeSantis also expressed frustration with the amount of doses the state has been receiving from the federal government.

"We were told weeks ago that we would start to see increases, we haven't seen it, we've been very stagnant this whole month," DeSantis said.

Florida has been receiving about 266,000 doses per week but has the capacity to administer more shots, DeSantis said.

"If we're capable of doing 450,000, 500,000 first doses and we're only getting 266,000, you're gonna see that there's gonna be shortages very quickly," he said. "Our capacity far outstrips what we're being given by the feds."

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