Orlando’s FEMA-backed vaccine site reaches capacity early on 1st day of 16+ vaccine eligibility

Site ran out of first doses of Pfizer vaccine by 1:15 p.m.

ORLANDO, Fla. – Monday marked the first day that anyone 16 or older could get a COVID-19 vaccine in Florida and the overwhelming demand saw the FEMA-backed vaccine site in Orlando reach capacity early.

The federally-supported site at Valencia College West Campus stopped letting new people in line by 1:15 p.m., according to a spokesperson for the state. The site was providing 3,000 first doses of the Pfizer vaccine. Second doses of the Pfizer vaccine remain available and the site will stay open until 7 p.m. to fulfill those inoculations.

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People who turned up at the site reported to News 6 90-minute to two-hour wait times to receive their vaccinations. The long lines were expected.

“We anticipate a large crowd tomorrow morning so I would expect a lot of people first thing in the morning trying to get in the door, a lot of younger people,” Denise Whitehead, state spokesperson for the Valencia College vaccination site, said Sunday.

Monday is the last day that the site in Orlando will offer first doses of the Pfizer vaccine. The state Department of Health and the Division of Emergency Management announced on Friday that the federally supported sites will be switching to the Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccine only on Tuesday.

The state said 3,000 doses will be administered daily. The site is open every day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Everyone who already received a first dose of Pfizer at any of the federally supported site is guaranteed to receive their second dose at one as well, according to the release. The four main sites and the satellite sites will continue to administer second doses of the Pfizer vaccine for those who already received the first, but once the satellite sites fulfill that obligation, they will cease to operate, the state said.

Other state-supported vaccination sites continue to offer the Pfizer vaccine.

You can find a full list of state-supported vaccine sites and the vaccines offered at each by clicking here.


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