OVIEDO, Fla. – Seminole County marked a milestone this week as county leaders said, for the first time ever, it took a day to fill COVID-19 vaccination appointments. County officials said they’re taking this as a good sign as they start planning on who gets the shots next.
Jack and Silvia Miklas said they were finally happy to get their COVID-19 vaccine at the Oviedo Mall on Wednesday.
“We called in and the lady on the phone said we have an appointment open and we said we’ll take it,” Jack Miklas said.
Seminole County Emergency Manager Alan Harris said the county opens its vaccine appointments on Tuesdays. He said this week marked the first time ever appointments were still available a day later.
“We had not experienced that of course in the past. Just a few months ago when we opened up the tickets they were gone in 10 minutes. Now it took 24 hours,” Harris said.
Appointments were still available as of 10 a.m. on Wednesday. Harris said the appointments were all eventually taken. He called it a good sign that it took longer to fill the slots.
“That tells me here in Seminole County people are either making appointments, they already have secured an appointment,or they may just not want an appointment any more,” Harris said. “So we may be looking at encouraging the state to move into that next priority group.”
It’s unclear who is in the next priority group. Harris said he asked state officials while on a call Wednesday morning.
“Unfortunately, the message from the state was at this time we don’t know,” Harris said.
News 6 also reached out to state officials asking for details on who is in the next priority group have yet to hear back.
Harris said the state’s current plan calls for law enforcement, 911 operators and essential workers to be vaccinated next. Harris said it’s unclear what qualifies as an essential worker.
He added it’s also unknown when people with immune-compromised conditions will be eligible to get the vaccine.
Harris said the county will plan for everything until they get guidance from the state.
“We really need to know that information. That is a critical piece of information as we plan,” Harris said. “If we are to plan what the next thing is going to be, we need to know what that is.”
Click here for more information on COVID-19 vaccination appointments in Seminole County.