Florida Expanding Publix Covid Vaccine Locations to Palm Beach, Monroe Counties

Residents can begin making reservations Wednesday with the first doses being distributed on Thursday

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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Tuesday the expansion of the state's vaccination program with Publix to two South Florida counties.

DeSantis said all 67 Publix pharmacies in Palm Beach County, along with two locations in Monroe County, in Islamorada and Key West, would begin giving the vaccine to residents ages 65 years and older.

Residents can begin making reservations Wednesday with the first doses being distributed on Thursday.

"This is the first really large county, so we're really excited," DeSantis said at a news conference at a Publix in Jupiter, adding that nearly 90% of seniors in Palm Beach County live within one mile of a Publix.

DeSantis also added seven locations in Martin County would begin giving the vaccine on Thursday as well.

Florida expanded its COVID-19 vaccination partnership with Publix into more pharmacies in the Panhandle and other counties last week when DeSantis said that 18 more Publix pharmacies in Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, and Escambia counties will begin taking vaccination reservations.

NBC 6's Carlos Suarez is at John Knox Village, where residents at the Pompano Beach facility got their doses of the COVID vaccine on Tuesday.

DeSantis previously announced 56 more stores in five counties - Duval, Flagler, St. Johns and Volusia in Northeast Florida along with Collier County in Southwest Florida - would begin taking appointments in the coming days with vaccinations beginning earlier in January in Marion, Hernando and Citrus counties.

DeSantis said 700,000 seniors had been vaccinated across the state and added the program has not expanded to Broward or Miami-Dade counties due to both's larger hospital programs already having vaccination programs - despite Florida not sending Miami-Dade any doses this week for first-time vaccinations.

Tuesday's announcement makes 181 locations across the state where the vaccine will be distributed.

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