Governor Ron DeSantis delivers a shot in the arm (pun intended) to Floridians, as his promise to deliver a timely and aggressive COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan is now being implemented.
While Florida Democrats like state Reps. Carlos Guillermo Smith and Anna Eskamani, as well as Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, have put it upon themselves to be the voices of opposition to DeSantis’ leadership, there isn’t much they can say about how well-positioned the state is to distribute the life-saving vaccines.
Several weeks ago, Gov. DeSantis announced that his administration prepared to distribute COVID vaccines once they came online, saying that the state had “purchased 5 million syringes, 5 million needles, and 5 million alcohol swabs.”
“We in the state of Florida have been actively planning and preparing for vaccine distribution, including by purchasing necessary supplies,” detailed Governor DeSantis. So far, “we have purchased 5 million syringes, 5 million needles, and 5 million alcohol swabs.”
DeSantis said that the state was only waiting for either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines to be approved to ship.
Pfizer delivered the first round of vaccines on Monday after receiving an emergency approval to ship from the federal government.
Moderna will be shipping 367,000 doses next week, but the shipment was “pending Emergency Use Authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).”
According to DeSantis’s executive office, “the Moderna vaccine will be distributed to 173 hospital locations that did not receive doses in the first allocation of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. The list of hospitals can be found here.
Because the Moderna vaccine does not require it to be stored in “ultra-cold” refrigeration units, more hospitals across the state will be able to receive the vaccine.
Meanwhile, the rate of COVID infections and deaths across the country has reached a staggering average of3,000 deaths per day. The Trump administration has tagged Florida as being in the “red zone.”