Analysis: Lower rate of vaccinations among Black, Hispanic people in Florida
Since last March, Black and Hispanic communities have experienced disproportionate health impacts related to COVID-19, higher rates of infection, illness, and death. State-reported data in Florida shows those communities are receiving smaller shares of the COVID-19 vaccines, too.
Gateway Mall offering 3K first dose Pfizer shots daily
Starting Tuesday, federally-supported vaccination sites in Florida, including the one in Jacksonville at Gateway Mall, will be able to administer up to 3,000 first doses of Pfizer vaccine per day, according to a statement from a spokesperson for the Florida Division of Emergency Management.
250 doses of J&J vaccine gone in under 2 hours; More pop-up clinics expected this week
People were in line when the site opened at 10 a.m. to offer the Johnson & Johnson vaccine without appointments. Many in line told News4Jax they specifically wanted the J&J vaccine, which is a single shot and does not require a second dose. News4Jax was told similar pop-up clinics offering the J&J vaccine will be held in Jacksonville in the next two days:WednesdayUniversity Park Library, 3435 University Blvd. Getting vaccinated in Northeast FloridaAdAttention 📢 The @FLSERT one-day Johnson & Johnson vaccine event at the Dallas Graham Library has reached its capacity of 250 doses administered and is now closed. With the drop, the state-run vaccination sites across Duval County administered close to 4,000 out of 6,900 available vaccine doses on Monday.
Pop-up vaccination site Monday on Jacksonville’s Northside
People line up Sunday at a pop-up vaccination site at Bruce Park. JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A one-day COVID-19 vaccination site is opening Monday at the Abyssinia Missionary Baptist Church, News4Jax was told. In addition, Shepherd of the Woods Lutheran Church at 7850 Southside Boulevard hosted a pop-up vaccination clinic from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. News4Jax learned there were 200 doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine available. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is a single shot and does not require a second dose.
Teams canvassing Florida neighborhoods to pre-register people for COVID shot
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – As mass vaccination sites prepare for an expected influx of newly eligible Floridians, state emergency response teams are canvassing neighborhoods trying to pre-register people for a COVID-19 shot. The Florida Division of Emergency Management said on Twitter that outreach teams have knocked on more than 100,000 doors across the state. AdNathaniel Drudge, 36, told outreach teams Friday he and his family are not interested in getting the vaccine right now. At the time this article was published, the Florida Division of Emergency Management had not yet provided the number of people being pre-registered statewide through outreach efforts. Division of Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz said he tripled the number of people canvassing communities in March, calling the effort “an additional tool to battle health equity.”Unlike past outreach efforts, teams can pre-register a larger population of Florida during canvassing.
State clarifies: Pfizer vaccine will be available for 16, 17-year-olds in Florida
However, people ages 16 and older will also be eligible, but only for the Pfizer vaccine. A statement reads in part:“At this time, the Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine currently authorized for individuals under the age of 18. In accordance with this guidance, individuals 16 and older will be eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine. The state will continue to release additional details on how individuals 16 and older can receive the Pfizer vaccine, as they become available.”Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Thursday that Florida residents 40 and older will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine starting Monday.
DeSantis: 40+ eligible for vaccine starting Monday, 18+ starting April 5
Ron DeSantis announced Thursday that Florida residents 40 and older will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine starting Monday. “We’ve now vaccinated over 70% of the roughly 4.4 million seniors living in the state,” DeSantis said in a video posted to Twitter. AdI’m pleased to announce that beginning this Monday, March 29, all Floridians age 40 and older will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. pic.twitter.com/gJ0HHmiINW — Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) March 25, 2021For now, Florida residents 50 and older, as well as other select groups, are eligible for the shot. Right now there are more vaccine clinics available than ever in Jacksonville, including federal-supported sites, mobile clinics, pop-ups and retail pharmacies.
New vaccine sites open at Southside church, Northwest Jacksonville center
Celebration Church on the Southside of Jacksonville is a new vaccine site. JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Two new coronavirus vaccine sites opened in Jacksonville on Wednesday. According to the Florida Division of Emergency Management, the sites are located at The Legends Center in Northwest Jacksonville and at Celebration Church on the Southside. The site at the Legends Center will be open seven days a week while the church site is only closed on Sunday. The Legends Center site, open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., will also offer COVID-19 testing.
3 Jacksonville federal vaccine sites to stop administering first doses next week
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Starting next Wednesday, only second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be available at federally-supported sites in Jacksonville, including the Gateway Shopping Mall and its two satellite sites in Oceanway and Jacksonville Beach. AdThe end of first doses at Jacksonville FEMA sites are happening as Gov. Ron Desantis is publicly discussing waiving age requirements entirely for the COVID-19 vaccine. The federal locations in Jacksonville added more than 4,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses a day to the supply in Northeast Florida. The federally supported sites in Jacksonville have not yet experienced a single day where its daily allotment of doses was used.
Vaccination clinics scheduled at 2 Jacksonville Housing Authority senior high-rises
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville Housing Authority officials said Monday that state contractor Agape Family Health will hold vaccination clinics this month at two of its senior high-rises. Agape Family Health CEO Mia Jones has, for weeks, assisted in running the state vaccination site at Edward Waters College. After seeing News4Jax’s stories on JHA’s senior housing properties, she offered to vaccinate 500 of the authority’s residents this week. “I was surprised because I thought that all of the senior housing properties had been taken care of with the corporate pharmacies going out,” Jones said. Otis Bess Jr., 71, is a Vietnam veteran and a resident of JHA senior high-rise Centennial Towers.
Hundreds of Jacksonville seniors still waiting for COVID-19 shots
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – More than 2 million seniors in Florida have been inoculated against COVID-19 so far, but as the state begins to lower age requirements, hundreds of seniors are still being missed in low-income housing. The agency said it vaccinated over 9,000 seniors in two weeks and it planned to wrap up the effort on Friday. State vaccine clinics were held at 10 Duval County HUD apartment complexes as a part of the vaccination effort, according to a Division of Emergency Management spokesperson. “A lot of the clients here either don’t have a way to go and then you got others, I think they are just a little leery of the vaccine,” Bess said. AdThe Division of Emergency Management has not answered questions about whether it plans to create vaccine clinics at public housing authorities throughout the state.
As state workers offer COVID shots to thousands of seniors, swath of senior housing in Jacksonville missed
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Thousands of elderly people in U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development housing units in Florida have been vaccinated against COVID-19, but in Jacksonville, a swath of senior housing has been missed. In a tweet Thursday, the Florida Division of Emergency Management said it went to 145 HUD facilities, offering shots to residents. FDEM is committed to ensuring that all seniors who want a vaccine are able to receive one,” the state Division of Emergency Management tweeted. “And it just felt like, ‘Oh, my God, maybe there is going to be a life after this.”But the state did not include any of the facilities with Jacksonville’s public housing agency, the Jacksonville Housing Authority. FDEM did not immediately answer whether it plans to develop similar vaccination clinics inside city-run public housing agencies across Florida.
A peek inside the Gateway Mall FEMA vaccination site
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Federal officials on Monday gave the first public first look inside the temporary COVID-19 vaccination site at Gateway Mall. The Federal Emergency Management Agency site, run by Navy personnel, can administer up to 2,000 does per day -- although the site has averaged about half of that since it opened Wednesday. They’re elderly.”You can make an appointment for a shot at the Gateway site, but it is not required. News4Jax asked the Florida Division of Emergency Management if the state would do something similar in Jacksonville but had not received an answer as of Monday afternoon. The Gateway site is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week.
More pop-up vaccination sites coming to Jacksonville churches
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Florida Division of Emergency Management and the Florida Department of Health continues to identify places of worship and other locations in underserved communities to administer the COVID-19 vaccine. That includes two sites in Jacksonville over the next few days:Friday: St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, 3738 Winton Dr.Saturday: Mt. Bethel Missionary Baptist Church, 1620 Helena StreetUnder the state’s criteria, anyone 65 or older, health care workers and those 50 or older that work in schools or child care, law enforcement or as firefighters can receive vaccines at the house-of-worship sites. These locations are in addition to the ongoing vaccination sites at Regency Square and Gateway Mall and smaller sites in Jacksonville at the Hammond Senior Center, the Normandy Community Center and Edward Waters College, as well as pharmacies and most Walmart, Sam’s Club and Publix pharmacies, some Winn-Dixie and Harveys supermarkets and CVS pharmacies in select counties including Flagler County.
Locations announced for 1st mobile vaccine sites connected to Gateway Mall hub
FILE - In this Feb. 10, 2021, file photo, a man receives a COVID-19 vaccine at the Martin Luther King Senior Center in North Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Gateway Mall on Jacksonville’s Northside is set to open for vaccine shots March 3 and will operate seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. as one of four federal sites in the state. The Florida Division of Emergency Management has also announced the first of a series of satellite vaccine sites that will operate in connection with the Gateway Mall federal vaccine hub. All four of the federally-supported main sites will be walk-up sites and at each site, 2,000 people a day could get the shot. To preregister with the statewide system, individuals can call the Duval County vaccine booking number -- 866-200-3762 -- or the designated phone number for their county or visit myvaccine.fl.gov.
Florida’s emergency director says supply still No. 1 issue with vaccine rollout
Moskowitz said that if Florida had the supply, it has the capacity to administer as many as 250,000 doses a day. Supply continues to be the number one issue facing vaccine rollout. “They know it’s a supply issue. Every state knows it’s a supply issue. You know it’s a supply issue,” Moskowitz said.
Florida relocating leftover COVID-19 shots to long-term care facilities
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – State health officials in Florida say if coronavirus vaccine doses at state vaccination clinics are set to expire and have gone unused, the state will immediately relocate the doses. The Florida Division of Emergency Management press secretary gave the example of doses hours away from spoiling being delivered to long-term care facilities or to another site in the area. Medical workers at the state vaccination clinic at Regency Square Mall in Jacksonville asked bystanders in the parking lot on Jan. 21 if they wanted to be vaccinated. AdFlorida Department of Health in Duval County officials could only speak for the Prime Osborn vaccination site, which is only administering second doses of the Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine. UF Health epidemiologist Chad Neilsen says planning for unused doses on the brink of expiration is a dilemma medical institutions across the country are facing.
Clay County did not receive more doses of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine this week
Clay County did not receive any additional allotments of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine this week from the Florida Division of Emergency Management, John Ward, the county’s director of Emergency Management, announced Wednesday. That means there will be no vaccination appointments opening up this week, Ward said in a video on Clay County Emergency Management’s Facebook page. There’s been a lot of sites opening up throughout the state that they’re really trying to spread the limited doses to,” Ward said. “We’ve been assured from starting next week that we should start getting a weekly allocation of doses. To receive updates and more information on the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine in Clay County, visit Alert.ClayCountyGov.com.
Rapid testing for COVID-19 now offered at Regency site in Jacksonville
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The state’s testing site located at Regency Square Mall in Jacksonville now provides rapid testing for COVID-19, the Florida Division of Emergency Management announced Tuesday. Results are available within one hour and will be provided by text or email to the patient. Anyone who tests negative with the BinaxNOWTM COVID-19 antigen test but is symptomatic for COVID-19 can receive a PCR COVID-19 test. PCR COVID-19 test results are expected to be returned within 24 to 48 hours to the patient. The drive-thru site at 9501 Arlington Expressway is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week.
Florida’s Hurricane Sally victims face obstacles obtaining federal aid
The disaster declaration from the Federal Emergency Management Agency covers all categories of public assistance for hard-hit Escambia County, including direct federal aid. Damage estimates from Hurricane Sally range from $2 billion to $10 billion. DeSantis' office on Wednesday activated the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan program through the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. The Florida Division of Emergency Management is also conducting damage assessments that could ultimately lead to federal assistance for individual residences. If it’s bad enough, it grants individual assistance to help victims like Holly and Wayne recover.
Long-term care facilities in Florida prepare to reopen doors to visitors
RELATED: DeSantis relaxes some visitation restrictions for long-term care facilitiesRules had not been published or announced by the agencies early Wednesday. The emergency order tracks recommendations that the Mayhew-led Task Force on the Safe and Limited Re-Opening of Long-Term Care Facilities released last week. The governor and members of the long-term care facility task force said Jacksonville resident and advocate Mary Daniel helped inspire the new rules. Daniel, whose husband suffers from Alzheimers disease, took a job as a dishwasher in her husbands long-term care facility to spend permitted time with him. Kennedy said staff will require visitors to undergo screening and temperature checks and that masks be worn at all times.
State-run Regency Square Mall COVID-19 testing site reducing hours
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. The COVID-19 testing site at the Regency Square Mall will be opening later and closing earlier, beginning Saturday. The site, run by the Florida Division of Emergency Management, is currently open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week. The site will continue to open seven days a week, but will have testing available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., beginning Saturday, according to the Florida Association of Public Information Officers. State of Florida run @FLSERT#JAX #COVID19 Test Site at Regency Mall has new hours starting Saturday, August 29, 2020. For more information on this and other available testing sites in Jacksonville, go to www.jaxready.com and click on COVID-19 Testing Information.
Florida sending search-and-rescue team to Louisiana
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A Florida emergency management search-and-rescue team is heading to Louisiana in anticipation of the landfall of Hurricane Laura. The team is expected to spend about two weeks, or however long it is needed, working after the storm, Division of Emergency Management spokesman Jason Mahon said Wednesday. The Florida Division of Emergency Management on Tuesday sent three staff members to help Mississippi set up shelters that comply with coronavirus health regulations. Florida utilities also have sent crews to help restore electricity in the region. Also, the Florida Municipal Electric Association said Wednesday that crews from public utilities in various parts of the state will help with restoration in Louisiana.
Florida Division of Emergency Management sends shelter experts to Mississippi
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. Three Florida emergency management staff members have been sent to Mississippi to help set up shelters that comply with coronavirus health regulations, as the region experienced Tropical Storm Marco on Monday and awaits Hurricane Laura. The Florida Division of Emergency Management said in a tweet that the assistance returns help provided during Hurricane Michael in 2018 and Hurricane Irma in 2017. The Division is happy to return the favor and values continued partnerships between state emergency response teams. https://t.co/ywnSyzsxze FL Division of Emergency Management (@FLSERT) August 25, 2020Division spokesman Jason Mahon said the people deployed have expertise in planning and sheltering. pic.twitter.com/d1TvAY05rv FL Division of Emergency Management (@FLSERT) August 24, 2020Gov.
St. Johns County takes steps to prep for Hurricane Isaias
ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. With Hurricane Isaias expected to brush or skirt the Northeast Florida coastline this weekend, St. Johns County officials are beginning to take steps to prepare for any potential impacts. St. Johns County Emergency Management is closely monitoring Isaias and participating in conference calls with the Florida Division of Emergency Management, National Hurricane Center and NWS Jacksonville. SandbagsSt. Johns County is providing free sandbags at six locations throughout the county beginning Saturday. Beach driving restrictedBecause of the chance for extreme high tides and unpredictable ocean conditions, beach driving on all St. Johns County beaches will be restricted beginning at 5 p.m. on Saturday. For more information regarding Hurricane Isaias, please call 904-824-5550.
Now is time to prepare your home before storm arrives
The Florida Division of Emergency Management is closely monitoring the newly developed potential tropical cyclone in the Atlantic. Ahead of the storm, emergency officials are reminding homeowners to prepare. Any heavier, larger items should be placed closer to the ground before any major storm. Its important homeowners also know how and when to turn off utilities like gas and electricity. You can find the Florida Division of Emergency Managements full preparedness checklist here.
Hurricane preps this year include pandemic plans
Jared Moskowitz tweeted Sunday night about the area of low pressure out in the Atlantic. Now is the time to make sure you have your 7 day Hurricane supply. According to NPR, the recommendation was about half that before the pandemic, but officials show there isn't enough space in a "worst-case" storm. All workers must be wearing personal protective equipment and face masks or coverings will be required for all. News4Jax has partnered with Ace Hardware to help people Build a Kit That Fits, where you can print out a list of needed hurricane supplies.
State opens COVID-19 testing sites at Targets in Yulee, Fleming Island
The state opened two more coronavirus testing sites in Northeast Florida on Friday. The Florida Division of Emergency Management announced that a total of seven more COVID-19 testing sites across the state will be created through a partnership with Target. The testing sites are located in Target parking lots and FDEM is conducting the testing. This includes continuing to expand testing locations, as well as expanding capacity at existing locations. There are currently 56 state-supported drive-thru and walk-up testing sites.
Florida emergency workers test positive for COVID-19
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. Four employees of the Florida Division of Emergency Management tested positive Thursday for COVID-19, bringing to 12 the number of division workers with the virus since twice-a-week testing began three weeks ago. The employees are believed to have contracted the virus outside of the Tallahassee emergency-management office, as they dont work in the same areas, Division of Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz said. The EOC (Emergency Operations Center) is open, were operating, Moskowitz said. Even before the recent positive tests, Moskowitz said the office has undergone nightly sanitary spraying, and a requirement was in place for people to wear face masks when inside the building. Protocols have also been set up that will limit occupancy at the Emergency Operations Center if a hurricane threatens the state.
Self-swab testing pilot program launching Friday at Regency Square
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. Regency Square Mall is one of four sites around the state set to open a drive-thru self-swab testing site for symptomatic individuals on Friday. Observed self-swab tests are available for those 5 years old and up who are showing symptoms. The Regency site can handle up to 2,200 self-swab tests per day. At the sites, symptomatic individuals will be directed to a separate lane for testing and will be provided an observed, self-swab test under the supervision of a health care professional. In addition to Regency, self-swab sites are also launching at the Orange County Convention Center, Hard Rock Stadium in Miami-Dade County and War Memorial Auditorium in Fort Lauderdale.
Some Floridians will need to be re-examined due to damaged COVID-19 tests
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. Of the more than 90,000 tests that were administered at state test sites since May 1, approximately 1,702 were damaged in transit, according to a news release Wednesday from the Florida Division of Emergency Management. The patients whose tests were damaged will be contact as soon as possible, the news release stated, and they will be prioritized for retesting at the site where they were originally examined. On Wednesday, the Florida Department of Health announced that the testing site at the Prime Osborn Convention Center in Duval County would close at days end. Throughout the month, the state has increased testing at sites across Florida. According to the division, its allowed for more than 5,000 additional tests per day.
Panhandle could face storm surge, heavy rain
"The potential tropical system in the Gulf is expected to bring dangerous storm surge along Florida's entire gulf coast," the state division tweeted Thursday. "Please prepare for heavy rainfall, gusty winds, isolated tornadoes and coastal flooding." The potential tropical system in the Gulf is expected to bring dangerous storm surge along portions of Florida's Gulf Coast. Please prepare for heavy rainfall, gusty winds, isolated tornadoes and coastal flooding. FL Division of Emergency Management (@FLSERT) October 17, 2019The tweet came as the National Hurricane Center issued a tropical storm warning from the border of Mississippi and Alabama to the Ochlockonee River in Florida and a tropical storm watch from the Ochlockonee River to Yankeetown.
Florida first lady announces mental health coordinator for disaster recovery
On Wednesday, First Lady Casey DeSantis announced that the Florida Division of Emergency Management has hired Darcy Abbott as the first Disaster Recovery Mental Health Coordinator in Floridas history. The First Lady made the announcement atTALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A longtime administrator at two Florida health care agencies has been named the state's first mental-health coordinator for recovery efforts after natural disasters, First Lady Casey DeSantis announced Wednesday. "The distress a disaster can have on residents is just as impactful as the physical destruction left behind, and we will continue to provide much-needed support as we develop and implement various mental health services." She will help coordinate mental health services for people impacted by the storm. "Hurricane Michael created a mental health crisis in the Panhandle at the magnitude this state has never experienced before.