The COVID-19 vaccination rollout has been confusing and frustrating for many Floridians who have spent hours trying to get through on phone lines swamped with calls, gotten up early to go online by 6 a.m. when the Publix website updates, or camped out overnight at a health department for the chance to make an appointment.
Last week, the state launched an onlne preregistration system, with phone numbers available for those who do not have internet access. Since the state apparently did not coordinate with the counties in advance of this announcement, some vaccination clinics will not be scheduled through the state system this week.
The Department of Health in Hendry and Glades Counties received a limited allotment of COVID19 Vaccines and will accept appointments. Individuals can now pre-register for vaccine appointments and be notified when appointments are available in their area by visiting myvaccine.fl.gov/ or by calling 866-201-6745.
Print your registration form or visit: www.preparehendry.com to download a consent form.
Okeechobee County has 500 “first” doses of the COVID-19 to give out this week to those over age 65 and medical personnel with direct patient contact. The vaccine will be given on a “first come, first serve” basis at the Okeechobee Agri-Civic Center on Thursday, Feb. 4, starting at 8:30 a.m. This will be a drive-thru event. Those seeking a vaccination must come through the gates on SR 710, which will open at 6 a.m.
Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office deputies will be on site to control traffic.
Consent forms are available online or at the Okeechobee County Public Library.
Please have the consent forms filled out and proof of Florida residency documents ready when you arrive. If you do not have a Florida driver’s license, you will need to bring two documents to prove you own or rent a residence in Florida.
Those who already had their first dose and are ready for their second dose will be contacted by the health department, or the agency which administered their first dose to arrange an appointment for the second dose.
Second doses will not be given at this drive-thru event. This event is only for first doses.
Palm Beach County
Palm Beach County initially used an email system for a waiting list. After more than 200,000 email requests came in, the county stopped accepting new requests. Last week, the Palm Beach County Health Care District began helping Florida Health-PBC to contact individuals 65 years and older who are on the waitlist, also by email, with instructions on how to schedule appointments. Much of Palm Beach County’s vaccine supply has gone to the Publix Pharmacies in that county.
Following complaints from officials in the rural areas which do not have a Publix, that plan changed. Palm Beach County Commissioner Melissa McKinlay announced on Twitter she has been notified 5,000 doses of the county’s vaccine supply would be allocated back to the health department and a vaccination pod would be planned in Belle Glade. The pod was not yet scheduled as of press time for this newspaper. For updates see SouthCentralFloridaLife.com.
Martin County is encouraging residents to use the state pre-registration system, myvaccine.fl.gov/.
Second doses available
In most cases, the second dose of the vaccine will be given by the same health department, hospital, pharamcy or medical facility where the person received their first dose of the vaccine. When you receive your first dose, you should receive information on how to schedule your second dose. For the Moderna vaccine, that dose is given 28 days after the first dose. For the Pfizer vaccine, the interval is 21 days. Most health departments are calling or emailing the individuals to schedule the second dose. For more information, contact the agency that administered your first dose.
Proof of residency
If you have a Florida driver’s license or Florida ID issued by the driver’s license office, bring your driver’s license or Florida ID to prove residency. If you do not have a Florida driver’s license or Florida ID, you will need two forms of documentation to prove Florida residency. (Note: A Post Office box or commercial/business address is NOT sufficient.)
The two forms of documenation must be from different categories:
Category A: a deed, mortgage, monthly mortgage statement, mortgage payment booklet, OR residential rental or lease agreement;
Category B: a utility hookup or utility work order dated within 60 days before the date of vaccination;
Category C: a utility bill dated within two months of the date of vaccination;
Category D: mail from a financial institution, including checking, savings, or investment account statements, dated within two months of the date of vaccination;
Category E: mail from a federal, state, county, or municipal government agency, dated within two months of the date of vaccination;
Category F: proof of a Florida residential address for the individual’s parent, stepparent, legal guardian, or other person with whom the seasonal resident resides in Florida, PLUS a written statement from the person with whom the seasonal resident resides stating that the seasonal resident does reside with him or her.