Statewide online vaccine registration site goes live

[Bruce Ackerman/Ocala Gazette]

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Posted February 1, 2021 | News Service of Floirda

[Bruce Ackerman/Ocala Gazette]

Florida officials on Friday rolled out a statewide website for people to pre-register for COVID-19 vaccinations.

The website – MyVaccine.FL.Gov – allows Floridians to sign up for vaccinations within their home counties. People who are eligible for the shots, including front-line health care workers and Florida residents ages 65 and older, will be contacted when appointments become available, according to Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz.

The website will provide a portal for people to enter their personal information “so they can stop hunting for an appointment,” Moskowitz told The News Service of Florida on Friday.

In Marion County, the local Department of Health office opened phone registration to those 65 and older early on in an effort to avoid long lines and reduce frustration. They closed registration after the first 50,000 and are working their way through the list. Appointments are set up in the order that registrations were received. Local officials said it could take until March to provide the two doses of vaccine to the first 50,000.

The data will be available to health officials in each of the 67 counties. The website notes that COVID-19 vaccines continue to arrive in Florida in an “extremely limited supply.” The registration site went live as many seniors have become increasingly frustrated over long wait times to sign up for shots and overall lack of access to vaccinations.

“The reason it feels chaotic is because demand dramatically outpaces supply. Too many people descending on too few locations with not enough appointments, which crashes websites and phone numbers. I know that people are hunting for appointments at 5:45 in the morning every day, only to come up empty. It’s all related to supply,” Moskowitz told a Senate committee on Thursday.

As of Jan. 27, about 1.8 million vaccinations had been administered in Florida. A total of 1.567 million people, including 1.1 million people ages 65 and older, had received shots, with some receiving two doses, according to the Florida Department of Health.

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