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Publix now prioritizing COVID-19 vaccines for educators

Florida-based grocer just received its first shipment of Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine

File photo

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Starting this week, Publix will prioritize COVID-19 vaccinations for teachers, school staff, and child- and family-care providers, the Florida-based grocer announced Monday.

The grocery chain, which just received its first shipment of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, is shifting its focus to vaccinating people who work in education and related fields as part of the effort to expand and streamline vaccine access through the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program.

Beginning on Wednesday, educators and child-care providers can schedule appointments to get their vaccines at participating Publix Pharmacy locations in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Virginia.

Under the federal directive, the grocery store chain is prioritizing vaccinations for the following: teachers, school staff and child-care workers who work in pre-primary, primary and secondary schools, as well as Head Start and Early Head Start programs including teachers, staff and bus drivers. Appointments will also be prioritized for licensed child-care providers, including both center-based and family care providers.

Once individuals with vaccine priority have made their appointments, leftover appointments will be made available to the rest of those who qualify for them. Among those also eligible are: adults under 65 deemed extremely vulnerable to COVID-19; health-care workers with direct patient contact; residents and employees of long-term care facilities; public safety workers ages 50 and up; and people ages 65 and up.

To make sure those eligible to receive their shots get their choice of vaccines, Publix is making every Wednesday a scheduling window for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Those seeking the Moderna vaccine can make appointments on Mondays and Wednesdays. Appointments can only be made online through the Publix vaccine reservation system, not by calling your local Publix or Publix Pharmacy.

Scheduling OpportunityAppointment DaysVaccine Provided
MondayWednesday — FridayModerna
WednesdaySaturday — SundayJohnson & Johnson
FridayMonday — TuesdayModerna

It’s worth mentioning that adults under the age of 65 who are considered extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 are required to provide a completed Florida Department of Health form, which must be signed by their physician.

Vaccinations will be provided to those with appointments while supplies last at no charge to the individual. Those with health insurance should bring a copy of their insurance card to their appointment, while Medicare members should bring their red, white and blue Medicare Part B card. Those without health coverage should bring their driver’s license or Social Security number.