coronavirus pandemic

Florida Vaccine Updates: Governor, Local Leaders Address Shortages

Here's what we know today about the coronavirus outbreak in Florida, and the effort to stop it

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As a limited supply of the coronavirus vaccine has become available across Florida, residents are understandably anxious to know when they will be able to stand in line for a dose.

Some of South Florida's local leaders met with the community this weekend to address to growing concerns over getting the vaccine while the Miami Heat are going with some four legged experts to help bring fans back safely this week.

Here's what we know today about the coronavirus outbreak in Florida, and the effort to stop it.

DeSantis to Feds: Florida Wants More COVID-19 Vaccine Doses

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis says the flow of COVID-19 vaccines has been stagnant and the state needs more to meet the increasing demand from residents.

In a news conference at a nursing home in Jacksonville, DeSantis said officials in Washington said the state would start to see its supply increase around this time, but that hasn’t happened.

At a White House briefing, press secretary Jen Psaki pushed back against DeSantis' comments criticizing the federal government, saying Florida has only administered about half of the vaccines it has been given.

Florida Adds 8,720 New COVID-19 Cases, Reports 156 More Virus Deaths Monday

The 8,720 new confirmed COVID-19 cases Monday brought Florida's total to 1,658,169 since the outbreak began.

Another 153 virus-related deaths among Florida residents were reported Monday, bringing the total to 25,446.

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

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 Monday.

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

Broward Looking for Volunteers for Vaccine Rollout

Broward County is recruiting volunteers to help distribute COVID-19 vaccinations throughout the region, the Medical Reserve Corps has announced.

The Florida Department of Health in Broward is looking for active or retired health professionals, people trained in National Incident Management, and other qualified individuals.

Prospective volunteers can submit an application by visiting

Health Officials, Local Leaders Address Concerns Over Vaccine Shortages in South Florida

Florida health officials held a press conference Sunday in Miami Gardens to provide updates on their vaccination efforts at the Hard Rock Stadium. A spokesperson for the state's Department of Emergency Management said the appointment-only vaccine site was administering as many as a thousand vaccines per day.

He also repeated the importance of people not arriving more than thirty minutes ahead of their scheduled time slot, and added that he did not have a clear answer regarding possible shortages for people who need the second dose.

Miami City Commissioner Joe Carollo paid a visit to pledge his support for vaccinating seniors as quickly as possible. The commissioner said as long as they were seniors who lived in the city of Miami, they would not be turned away.

Florida Reports 9,535 New COVID-19 Cases, 132 Additional Virus-Related Deaths Sunday

Florida registered more than 9,500 new coronavirus cases Sunday, while the state's virus-related death toll increased by more than 130.

The 9,535 new confirmed COVID-19 cases brought Florida's total to 1,649,449 since the outbreak began, according to figures released by the state's department of health.

The positivity rate for new cases in the state dropped to 8.25% in Sunday's report, an increase from Saturday's 6.54% rate.

President Biden to Sign Sweeping Coronavirus-Related Travel Restrictions

President Joe Biden plans to sign restrictions Monday on travel to the United States to mitigate COVID-19 transmission, two White House officials confirmed Sunday.

The ban would prevent most non-U.S. citizens from entry if they have recently been in South Africa where a new strain of COVID-19 has been identified. The virus has claimed more than 418,000 American lives and infected upwards of 25 million across the U.S., according to an NBC News tracker.

The president is also expected to reinstate broader restrictions that were in effect much of the past year but rescinded by then-President Donald Trump days before his term ended. Those limits would affect non-U.S. citizens traveling from the United Kingdom, Ireland and much of Europe under what is known as the Schengen countries who share a common visa process. Travelers from Brazil would also be affected.

Miami Heat Planning to Bring Back Some Fans, With Help From Dogs

The Miami Heat are bringing back some fans, with help from some dogs.

The Heat will use coronavirus-sniffing dogs at AmericanAirlines Arena to screen fans who want to attend their games. They’ve been working on the plan for months, and the highly trained dogs have been in place for some games this season where the team has allowed a handful of guests — mostly friends and family of players and staff.

Starting this week, a limited number of ticket holders will be in the seats as well, provided they get past the dogs first.

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