Florida doctors will be getting vaccine doses — and leeway for how to administer them

State releases form to prove vulnerability, but some confusion remains

MIAMI – Gov. Ron DeSantis says Florida is leaving it up to doctors to vouch for patients 50 and over they believe should be prioritized for a COVID-19 vaccine, ultimately planning to send doses directly to doctors’ offices.

“As Johnson & Johnson [vaccine supply] continues to come in, this should just be in every doctor’s office, and then this way they’re able to go and work with their patients,” the governor said. “We think trusting our doctors is the way to go. I think most of the physicians, they have to sign their name to this.”

Statewide, more than 3.1 million people have gotten at least their first shot, including over 350,000 people in Miami-Dade County and over 270,000 in Broward.

But what does a patient need to bring if they are under 65 and want a vaccine as part of those deemed “extremely vulnerable” to the coronavirus?

The state’s health department has shared a new form, requiring a physician’s signature to get access to the FEMA-supported vaccination sites and pharmacies.

A spokesperson from Jackson Health confirms they will also be accepting that Department of Health medical clearance form. They will also accept a note on a doctor’s letterhead or prescription pad. That form, however, is not meant to be used at the state-run Hard Rock Stadium or Marlins Park sites.

Robin Levine is 63. She and her husband both have diagnosed underlying conditions, but at their age struggled to find access to appointments — even with a doctor’s recommendation.

“The first challenge is getting to the doctor,” she said. “Can people do that?

She worries confusion over what constitutes proper documentation could keep some from getting their shot.

“Yeah it’s very confusing, you know, who is eligible, what does the script have to say,” Levine said. “You know it’s up to the technician, really.”

CLICK HERE to see a copy of the Florida Department of Health’s form to be filled out to prove extreme vulnerability in order to be vaccinated.

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