Orange County to reopen online signups for COVID-19 vaccine

Signups begin at 8 a.m. on Jan. 7

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings (Orange County government)

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange County is reopening online signups for the coronavirus vaccine at 8 a.m. on Thursday.

The appointments are only available to people who are 65 and older and can be made at this link on Thursday.

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More than 25,000 people have received a COVID-19 vaccine in Orange County.

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This means about 1.7% of Orange County has been vaccinated.

“I couldn’t be prouder of Dr. Pino and his staff at the Department of Health in Orange County who have been really working double shifts for the last week or so,” Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said.

The county received 19,500 additional doses on Tuesday.

Demings said more staff has been hired to help administer the COVID-19 vaccine.

The Orange County mayor reminded everyone the signup is for people 65 and older.

“I’m told there are some individuals who were young and tried to register, but did not have the proper ID,” Demings said.

Dr. Raul Pino said Orange County can vaccinate 1,500 people a day and they will vaccinate 2,000 people a day down the road.

Vaccinations will be administered six days a week.

“What you want to do is vaccinate as many people as possible as fast as possible,” Pino said.

Orange County leaders said despite the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, they want residents to keep wearing masks, practice social distancing and wash their hands.

“We have seen positivity rates that have been double digits, 14 to 16% positivity rates. That’s almost twice what it was, maybe a week and a half to two weeks ago,” Demings said.

Pino said the hospitals in Orange County have the ability to handle the situation right now and 23% of beds are available in the county.

“Things will get worse if we don’t curve this,” Pino said.

There have been more than 1,409,900 cases of COVID-19 reported in Florida and more than 81,160 cases of the virus reported in Orange County.

The Florida Department of Health reports 763 people have died from COVID-19 in Orange County and 1,981 people have been hospitalized from the virus.