Important Pandemic Updates
Despite this unprecedented global pandemic, I am committed to working in a bipartisan manner to Restore Our Way of Life, Rebuild Our Economy and Renew the American Dream
General Public Health Information- Our nation’s leading physicians and scientist recommend the following tips to help keep you and your loved ones safe and to help stop the spread of COVID 19.
- Wash Hands Often
- Socially Distance and Wear a Face Mask if You Cannot Socially-Distance
- Cover Coughs
- Stay Home if Sick
- See your Doctor if symptoms persist
The CDC offers a self-checker tool to indicate when you may want to get testing for COVID-19 https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/coronavirus-self-checker.html
Your local health department provides updated information on nearby testing options.
COVID-19 Vaccine Info
As your federal representative, my role in the vaccination process has been to facilitate the development, approval and production of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine. Based on the principle of federalism and in accordance with the law, each state was responsible for developing and implementing a vaccine distribution plan to meet the targeted needs of prioritized population groups. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) provided guidance to states about which groups it felt should be prioritized in tier one of plans (healthcare workers, those in long-term care facilities and seniors over the age of 65) however, each state had the discretion to develop its plan based on the individual needs of its citizenry. I know that vaccination roll-out in our state has been challenging for many, and I have worked closely with state and local officials to share the feedback I’ve received from my constituents. I will continue to do so. I can say that Florida’s distribution plan is a work in progress and that the state continues to improve and expand its efforts.
April 5th Update:
- The first- Pasco COVID appointments are now being released every Friday at 2 pm (not Sunday at 2) and
- All Adults who live in Florida are now eligible. So we need to change the eligibility criteria to reflect that change.
In Florida: 5.346 million Floridians have been vaccinated.
County Health Departments
- Pinellas County continues to have available appointments for next week. Floridians can sign up for those slots by creating an account on the patient portal. https://www.patientportalfl.com/s/?language=en_US
- In Pasco, appointments are released every Sunday at 2:00 p.m. for the following week. In order to get one of those slots, Floridians must first create an account through the patient portal. https://www.patientportalfl.com/s/?language=en_US
- Hillsborough County is registering residents through the state system. https://www.patientportalfl.com/s/?language=en_US Once you register you will be told where to go when it is your turn for a vaccine. Any Floridian can use this system as well.
Federal site- Tampa Greyhound Track
- 755 E. Waters Ave., Tampa, FL 33604
- Daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (weekends included)
- Carrying out second doses for those who received first dose at site
- Very limited first dose availability
- Offers Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson
- No appointments required
Pharmacies- Appointments are required
Doctor’s Urgent Care in Odessa (by appointment) https://www.wfla.com/community/health/coronavirus/doctors-urgent-care-in-odessa-holding-covid-19-vaccination-clinics/?fbclid=IwAR2ZTAhdoU7KWoIDLJur56KMbUVogEV73rKbOaHKz1TVyTV4k_Khui68AlQ
Veterans and Families of Veterans
Any Veteran (regardless of age) who receive their healthcare at the VA can walk into James A. Haley or Bay Pines Hospital without an appointment to be vaccinated. Appointments can be made at various VA vaccination clinics. To learn more visit https://www.va.gov/health-care/covid-19-vaccine/
Community members who meet the state’s eligibility criteria, and who are a Veteran that doesn’t receive VA medical care, a family member of any Veteran or a family member of a VA employee can register for an appointment https://www.eventbrite.com/o/tampa-va-32699669541
Medicaid Patients with Transportation Issues
If you have Medicaid and need transportation to get your vaccine, there is help. Florida Medicaid will take you to get the COVID-19 vaccine at no cost. All you need to do is set up a time to get your vaccine. Next, let your Medicaid plan know you need a ride and they will take care of the rest. http://hillsborough.floridahealth.gov/_files/_documents/press-release/_documents/19024-medicaid-transportation-covid-19-vaccinations-flyer-final.pdf
CDC Tele-Town Hall May 20, 2021
Click above to listen to a Tele-Town Hall with myself and Dr. John T. Brooks of the CDC. Dr. Brooks presently serves as the CDC’s Chief Medical Officer for COVID-19 response.