(TNS) - Continued increases in the federal supply of the Pfizer vaccine for COVID-19 combined with a continued supply of Moderna vaccines means Florida will receive more than 470,000 initial doses between the two brands the week beginning March 8. That’s on top of the supply being delivered this week of more than 175,000 of the newly authorized Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
The data released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Tuesday shows 22,230 more doses of Pfizer over this week’s allotment. An equal number of second doses for each of the two vaccines has also been allotted, with first doses usually arriving from Monday-Wednesday each week.
This week’s supply is already the most the state has been given in 2021. That total, 447,850,, will increase next week to 470,080. The supply is also being augmented by the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program, which delivers directly to Publix, Walmart, Winn-Dixie and CVS properties with Walgreens locations also expected to be announced soon. And also beginning March 3, the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be setting up four mass-vaccination sites using supplies not part of the state allotment.
Saturday’s emergency approval of a third vaccine, the one-dose Johnson & Johnson version, meant the federal government began rolling out a supply that was in hand to states, including 175,100 to Florida. How much more the state might expect the week of March 8 of the new vaccine has yet to be announced.
The state this week expanded the footprint of who could be vaccinated at the various sites. While still targeting those 65 and older, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday signed an executive order that allowed K-12 teachers, sworn law enforcement and firefighters ages 50 and up to also get vaccinations. He also expanded it so those with underlying conditions like diabetes could sign up.
This marks the sixth straight week with a significant jump in the state’s allotment. In January, the state was only receiving about 265,000 initial doses a week.
The federal government was also responsible for supplying CVS and Walgreens for a program to vaccinate the residents and staff at nursing homes and long-term care facilities.
The state allotment is used however the state sees fit, including whether or not it wants to use its second dose allotment immediately or hold onto them. DeSantis has stated Florida will keep second doses on hand to make sure the vaccines achieve the desired efficacy against COVID-19.
To date, Florida has received or is slated to receive a total of 8,212,220 doses between Pfizer and Moderna in addition to the 175,100 J&J doses. That’s enough to vaccinate 4,281,210 people. The state has a population of 21.5 million.
It has doled them out to hospital systems, county health departments, state-run drive-throughs and the Publix partnership among other options.
Statewide, 3,084,403 people have received the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine, of which 1,723,722 people have received the second dose. The count is a snapshot through Monday, based on the report released Tuesday. Of those who have received at least the first dose, 2,340,862 are over the age of 65.
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