Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis visited Jacksonville Tuesday to announce a new coronavirus vaccine partnership with Walmart pharmacies.
Beginning Friday, 18 Walmart stores in Duval County will begin distributing the vaccine, along with additional sites in Baker and Clay Counties.
The retailer has been allotted 25,000 doses of the vaccine statewide to be distributed across 119 stores. The footprint accounts for 30% of Walmart’s Florida stores, DeSantis said.
DeSantis said 42% of seniors in Duval County have already been vaccinated, higher than the state average.
“Just think, we’re going to be able to add to those numbers and have a majority of seniors in no time,” DeSantis said.
The rollout of the coronavirus vaccine has been rocky across the Sunshine State as Florida’s millions of seniors, healthcare workers and other eligible groups clamor for a limited supply. Appointments at government-run and private vaccine sites have filled quickly, leaving many seniors frustrated and confused.
Reporting also showed that some of the first sites to open, largely at Publix grocery stores, were disproportionately located in majority white areas, leaving people of color less likely to be vaccinated.
DeSantis said the Walmart locations were specifically chosen to complement Publix stores and bring vaccine sites closer to more Floridians. The governor also said 269 additional Publix locations across the state were being added. The full Publix list, which includes 25 locations in Duval County, is available here.
According to WJCT News partner News4Jax, Florida is expected to receive around 325,000 doses of the vaccine this week, up from 307,000 doses it got last week.
Nearly 28,000 Floridians have died from COVID-19, with 992 of those in Duval County.
To find out more about getting vaccinated at a Walmart location, visit Walmart.com\covidvaccine.
Contact Sydney Boles at email@example.com, or on Twitter at @sydneyboles.