Starting Friday, specific form necessary for vulnerable individuals under 65 to get vaccine, FEMA says

Federal vaccination sites seeing uptick in distribution in Miami-Dade County

MIAMI, Fla. – Some people showing up with doctor’s notes on Thursday were able to get a vaccination at the state-run FEMA sites, but starting Friday, they will be turned away.

Gov. Ron DeSantis expanded COVID-19 vaccine eligibility in Florida on Friday signing an executive order that now allows doctors be able to determine who is extremely vulnerable to COVID-19.

Under Gov. Ron DeSantis’ addition to the first phase inoculation plans for Floridians, Executive Order 21-46 states that persons deemed by a physician to have a high-risk medical condition will now be able to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

The Florida Department of Health released via Twitter a copy of the form a physician must use to certify someone is extremely vulnerable to the virus and eligible to receive the vaccine. A rule goes into effect on Friday that only those with the proper forms will be able to get the vaccine. A doctor’s note or prescription from a physician’s pad will also not be acceptable.

“Certainly the last thing we wanted (Thursday) is someone to waste a trip and not be serviced and minimize any disruption. At the end of the day, we have vaccines and we want to get those out,” said FEMA Master Public Information Officer Mike Jachles.


But Jachles said that starting Friday, nothing but the form signed by a doctor will be accepted. The form is for those under 65 who meet the extreme vulnerability criteria as deemed by a physician.

The state-run sites of Marlins Park and Hard Rock Stadium will not be administering vaccines to those high-risk individuals under the age of 65. Those recipients will only be accepted at the FEMA sites. FEMA is fully funding the temporary site, which will be open for eight weeks. Miami Dade College’s North Campus has a FEMA site set up where they can administer 3,000 COVID-19 shots per day.

The site is open everyday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and appointments are not required.

FEMA is also supporting two satellite hub vaccination sites. They are located in Sweetwater at Ronseli Park (250 Southwest 114th Avenue) and in Florida City at the Youth Activity Center (650 Northwest 5th Avenue). Both are offering 500 doses daily and are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week.

People who are at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19 have conditions including cancer, COPD, heart conditions, obesity, sickle cell disease, Type 2 diabetes and more, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

About the Authors:

Christina returned to Local 10 in 2019 as a reporter after covering Hurricane Dorian for the station. She is an Edward R. Murrow Award-winning journalist and previously earned an Emmy Award while at WPLG for her investigative consumer protection segment "Call Christina."

Michelle F. Solomon is the podcast producer/reporter/host of Local 10's original, true-crime podcast The Florida Files and a digital journalist for Local