Gov. Ron DeSantis said law enforcement and teachers who are at least 50 years of age can begin receiving doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, but a timeline has not been announced.
He said between the likely approval of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine and the four federally-supported sites coming to major cities, including Tampa, it was the right time to include other priority groups.
DeSantis said more details will be provided next week.
According to the non-profit Kaiser Family Foundation, Florida remains one of 21 states that isn't providing shots to teachers, and one of 15 that hasn't yet inoculated law enforcement and other first responders,
Until this week, there had been no mention of who would be next in line for the COVID-19 vaccine in Florida, making the Sunshine State the only state not to provide residents with that information.
During a Tuesday news conference from Hialeah, DeSantis said he will use a portion of the "tens of thousands" of extra vaccine doses the FEMA sites bring to the state to vaccinate teachers and law enforcement officers.
The federal site in Tampa will vaccinate 2,000 people per day, seven days a week. It opens March 3. The other three locations will be in Miami, Orlando and Jacksonville.
The sites are:
- Tampa Greyhound Track: 755 E. Waters Ave.Tampa, FL, 33604
- Valencia College – West Campus: 1800 S. Kirkman Road Orlando, FL, 32811
- Gateway Mall: 5200 Norwood Ave Jacksonville, FL, 32208
- Miami Dade Community College (North Campus): 11380 NW 27th Ave. Miami, FL, 33167
"Once we get to the point of the senior population where we start to see the demand go down, then we obviously are going to lower the age and get people at a minimum of 60," DeSantis said earlier in the week, "and then maybe even 55 right off the bat, but it really is dependent on making sure we have the supply."
On Thursday, he said over 47% of Florida seniors were vaccinated, but the figure could be higher due to a delay in reporting.