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Hard Rock Stadium vaccine site will close early in preparation of college playoff game

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – The long lines for COVID-19 vaccinations will look a little different Monday, as the site will close early in preparation for the college football playoff game.

Organizers decided to suspend their daily COVID-19 testing operations for the day in light of the college football National Championship game.

Previously scheduled vaccinations, however, will continue.

“Our focus on Monday is the vaccines,” said Mike Jachles, a spokesman for the Florida Division of Emergency Management. “We will be inoculating people that have appointments for the vaccines between the hours of 9 a.m. and noon. We’ll close the gates at 11:30.”

But as people over the age of 65 still struggle to find appointments, the state is now starting a new partnership with places of worship.

The Koinonia Worship Center in Pembroke Park was one of dozens of churches across the state to be chosen for the program, including churches in underserved communities.

On Sunday, roughly 500 seniors there received their first dose of the vaccine.

“This effort is among the first of its kind in Broward County since the governor has announced his recommendation to open up places of worship as places for people to be vaccinated,” State Sen. Shevrin Jones said.

“We can’t over-stress the importance of getting vaccinated, especially when it means protecting our must vulnerable citizens, our seniors,” U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Florida, said.

But even getting a shot at church requires a pre-scheduled appointment.

Gov. Ron DeSantis acknowledged the demand for vaccines on Sunday while at a similar event in the Florida panhandle.

“If you can’t get in now, just hang in there, because not only is there going to be more opportunities in the future, we get more vaccine in the short term (and) we want to get that out,” he said. “And so, you may be able to sign up very soon.”


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