At the beginning of the pandemic, the FVMA worked with the State of Florida to request that veterinarians and their staff be considered essential employees. This was vital for us to do, on behalf of the veterinary profession in the state, in order for the profession to continue to operate. Most clinics have adopted CDC recommendations of “curbside service” so that they can operate in a safe manner and reduce staff exposure to this virus. With the release of the COVID-19 vaccine, we’ve received numerous questions about whether or not this status as an essential employee will allow for quicker access to the vaccine.
Governor DeSantis signed an Executive Order (Executive Order Number 20-315) regarding the priority in which people will be able to receive the vaccine. Based on this Executive Order, the first phase of vaccine administration will be for the following populations:
- Long-term care facility residents and staff;
- Persons 65 years of age and older; and
- Health care personnel with direct contact with human patients
Persons deemed to be extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 by hospital providers.
Registration to receive the vaccine at a county point-of-dispensing (POD) will be available. Registration forms will be accompanied by a short questionnaire to ensure patients are eligible based on defined priority groups. Vaccines will be available for insured patients with no copay, and uninsured patients will also have no direct charge to receive the vaccine.
Text FLCOVID19 to 888777 to receive alerts from your local zip code, including announcements for vaccine registration.
Here are some important resources regarding vaccine updates:
- Monitor current vaccine status statewide
- Florida Department of Health COVID-19 Vaccine webpage
- For updates about the vaccine and distribution in your location, text FLCOVID19 to 888777
Please continue to monitor your county health department and county emergency management webpages.