DeSantis Executive Order Allows Vaccine for “Vulnerable” People

DeSantis Executive Order Allows Vaccine for “Vulnerable” People

By Jim Saunders, The News Service of Florida

TALLAHASSEE — After focusing almost exclusively since December on vaccinating seniors, Gov. Ron DeSantis has cleared the way for more people under age 65 to receive shots if they are “extremely vulnerable” to COVID-19.

DeSantis issued an executive order late Friday afternoon that allows physicians to vaccinate people who are deemed “extremely vulnerable” to the disease. The executive order also will allow advanced practice registered nurses and pharmacists to provide shots to such people if physicians determine that the recipients are extremely vulnerable.

Under a Dec. 23 executive order, hospitals — but not the other types of health-care providers — were allowed to vaccinate people considered extremely vulnerable to COVID-19. But the primary focus of the December order was DeSantis’ push to vaccinate people age 65 or older.

DeSantis’ office did not issue an announcement about Friday’s change but posted the executive order on its website. The order said Florida is “leading the effort to distribute the vaccine to the elderly and vulnerable populations of the state.”

The order also kept in place approval to vaccinate seniors, long-term care facility residents and staff members and health-care workers who have direct patient contact.

Through Saturday, the state Department of Health reported that 3,017,661 people had been vaccinated in Florida. Of those, 1,680,230 had completed the two-dose series required with vaccines produced by the drug companies Pfizer and Moderna. The remaining 1,337,431 had received first doses.

DeSantis has barnstormed the state for weeks promoting vaccinations for seniors, who are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19. Through the Saturday count, 2.29 million of the people who had been vaccinated in Florida were 65 or older, according to the Department of Health report.

The vulnerability of seniors to the disease has shown up in death numbers throughout the pandemic. The Department of Health reported Sunday that 30,852 Florida residents have died of COVID-19, with 25,761 age 65 or older. — an 83 percent rate that has remained largely unchanged for months.

Friday’s executive order, like the December order, did not define people who can be vaccinated because they are extremely vulnerable. It appears to leave that determination up to physicians.

While the numbers of new cases reported daily in Florida have slowed somewhat, the state reported Sunday that it has had 1.9 million cases since the pandemic started. That included an additional 5,539 cases reported Sunday.

DeSantis on Friday also issued an executive order that extended for 60 days a state of emergency because of the pandemic. The state of emergency was originally issued nearly a year ago, on March 9, as COVID-19 began hitting the state and was later extended.

5 Responses to "DeSantis Executive Order Allows Vaccine for “Vulnerable” People"

  1. Governor DeSantis Best Governor in America!

    Thank you to the heroes on the front lines and to the leadership by Governor DeSantis, the vaccines are being distributed and administered flawlessly..

    Florida should be the role model for the nation..

  2. The only press releases that Nikki Fried seems to be able to put out are those that attack Gov. DeSantis. I’m not sure criticizing DeSantis for bringing additional vaccine doses to Manatee County looks good politicly. Nikki stick to putting your face on gas pumps.

  3. I’d rather my physician decide if I should be in the “vulnerable” category to be vaccinated, rather than by the amount I donated to a political party or if I’m in a wealthy neighborhood.

  4. Nikki Fried Chicken, is stirring up the pot to cover up for her lack of accomplishments in office. From Town Hall, “The sole Democrat elected to statewide office in Florida is calling on the U.S. House of Representatives coronavirus committee to investigate the state’s Republican governor, Ron DeSantis, for ‘alleged political favoritism’ in coronavirus vaccine distribution,” Yahoo reports. “That call comes in a letter that Florida’s agriculture commissioner, Nikki Fried Chicken, will send on Monday morning to Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., who heads the coronavirus committee, and Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, its ranking Republican member.” This is what Democrats do, distract from their lack of accomplishments. What has she accomplished? Nothing! Sooner or later, most folks will realize you cannot count on Democrats for anything and when you deal with them, get your money up front-just ask Georgia voters did they get their $2000.00 Plugs, promised them day one.

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