Florida will be getting an additional 41,000 doses of the COVID vaccine - weather permitting - by next week, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Thursday.
DeSantis held a news conference at a Pinellas Park senior community center, continuing his push to vaccinate seniors in the state ahead of other groups. DeSantis was at the opening of the latest vaccination site in the state, aiming to vaccinate 3,000 additional seniors in the next three days.
Florida has spent the past weeks vaccinating seniors, including Holocaust survivors and veterans of the Bay of Pigs in both Broward and Miami-Dade counties.
DeSantis said Thursday that around 2 million of Florida's 4.5 million seniors have received a vaccine shot, about 42% of the state's total. Nearly 80% of the shots the state is receiving are going to seniors, DeSantis said.
Florida received 325,000 vaccine doses last week, according to DeSantis, and has been told the additional Moderna doses could be shipped as late as Monday due to storms that have been sweeping the country.
DeSantis said an additional site would be opening next week with the goal of giving 5,000 doses, adding he hopes FEMA would send doses to the state for distribution that Florida officials can dictate where they go.
DeSantis added he hoped the Johnson & Johnson vaccine would be approved by the end of February.
Wednesday, DeSantis urged Florida residents to be patient during a news conference near Sarasota as bad winter weather in the U.S. is delaying shipments of COVID-19 vaccine doses to the state.
The governor said Florida has received the "vast majority" of this week's shipment of the Pfizer vaccine doses, with about 136,000 arriving and around 9,000 still expected.
"If you have an appointment like at a Publix for Thursday and they have to delay you that's almost assuredly why," DeSantis said. "So just have patience on it, there's nothing we can do with the weather in the other states."
DeSantis said earlier this week the state was working to ensure the vaccine doses were distributed as efficiently as possible when they arrive.