December 30, 2020
Bushnell, FLA — The purpose of this memo is to amplify some of the information that was released today by Sumter County Government on the distribution of Covid-19 vaccine.
As mentioned in that release, we received 2,500 doses of Moderna vaccine. In contemplation of a mass vaccination event at a future date (to be determined contingent upon the receipt of a sufficient quantity of additional vaccine), it will be necessary to vaccinate medical personnel who will not only be participating in that event but also are caring for Covid-19 patients in their medical practices on a daily basis. Accordingly, my office is working closely with The Villages Health to offer vaccination to these medical practices. It is anticipated that a sizable vaccination force can be assembled by prioritizing vaccination this way, which will be augmented with additional support provided by Department of Health central office, in coordination with the Division of Emergency Management.
Additionally, as some people cared for by our local medical practices have medical conditions of such severity that they may not be able to participate in a mass vaccination event, I have advised The Villages Health that it would be medically reasonable to offer vaccination to people in these most vulnerable circumstances now.
Consistent with Governor DeSantis Executive Order 20-315 of 23 December 2020, my office will additionally be offering a small block of appointments at our Bushnell office to provide vaccination. These vaccinations will be done strictly by appointment. Only those persons who have signed up will be vaccinated. Please call (352) 569-3102 starting 4 January 2021 to schedule an appointment.
Before signing up, please review the pre-vaccination checklist link provided by The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/downloads/pre-vaccination-screening-form.pdf.
Specifically, page 5 of this checklist advises that your medical provider approve that it is medically safe for patients on blood thinners to receive any Covid-19 vaccines intra-muscularly. Additionally, persons who received any other form of vaccination in the preceding 14 days should defer receipt of Covid-19 vaccine until they are past this window. Please be aware that Moderna vaccines come in vials of 10 doses. We do not want any vaccine wastage. Accordingly, if you are given an appointment, please keep your appointment with us.
Once you have received the two-dose series, please know that it may take several weeks after vaccination to develop immunity. It is therefore critically important that you continue to follow for at least 6-8 weeks after vaccination the general prevention guidance discussed below to avoid becoming infected:
- Please wear a mask, particularly when participating in activities indoors
- Socially distance inter-personal contacts to the extent you are reasonably able
- Limit unnecessary exposure to crowds
- Avoid unnecessary travel
- Wash your hands, carry portable hand sanitizer
What is written above provides an outline of the initial stages of a massive vaccination campaign in this county. With only 2,500 doses of Moderna vaccines received at present for approximately 130,000 elders who are medically eligible for priority vaccination, it provides the most efficient plan for utilization of a limited number of vaccine doses in the short term, while providing for the strategic investments to support a mass vaccination campaign over the longer term.
Together, through a combination of perseverance and caring, we will overcome the challenges of Covid-19. I may be reached at 352-569-3138 if you have questions regarding this guidance.
Sanford D Zelnick D.O.., M.S.
Sumter County Health Department
About the Florida Department of Health
The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.