HOLT, Fla., March 19, 2020—Florida residents 50 years and older will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine beginning Monday.
Gov. Ron DeSantis will sign an executive order today to lower the eligibility rate to 50 years of age.
Vaccine availability opened up to residents 60 years and older March 15.
“We think we’ve done pretty good this week with 60-to-64,” he said during a morning news conference.
Lowering the eligibility to 60 did not appear to put a stress on the distribution, according to the governor.
“We saw some demand,” he said. “There were a lot of people who were waiting for it, but it was not in any way overwhelming.”
DeSantis plans to open vaccine eligibility to everyone before May 1.
“I think we will definitely be opening it up to everybody, certainly before May 1, and maybe much sooner than that, so stay tuned,” he said.
The state of Florida will receive 42,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine next week which has proven to be 100 percent effective in preventing deaths and serious illness, according to the governor.
Vaccine demand will decrease as the eligible age is lowered, according to DeSantis.
“Some are going to want it; some won’t,” he said.
Florida has vaccinated more than three million senior citizens so far.
“We’re close to 70 percent of all seniors who have had a shot,” he said. “We’re the first state to do seniors first as a priority.”
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