DeSantis says Florida will make vaccines available to residents, but won't mandate them
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis took to YouTube to address updates on the progress of coronavirus vaccines.
DeSantis said two vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna are awaiting FDA approval, calling the news "particularly heartening" and the "greatest rays of hope that we've seen" since the pandemic began.
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"Our goal is to make all safe and effective COVID vaccines available to Floridians who want them, but the state will not mandate that Floridians take these vaccines," DeSantis said in the video. "That's going to be the choice of each and every Floridian."
Tampa General Hospital will be among the first across Florida to store the new COVID-19 vaccine while they wait for final approval to use it.
The vaccine stored by hospitals will be whichever one the government approves first, possibly the one from Pfizer. Adventhealth Orlando will reportedly also be among the first, along with UF Health Jacksonville, Hollywood's Memorial Regional and Miami's Jackson Memorial.
RELATED: Tampa General Hospital to be among first hospitals with the COVID-19 vaccine
The first vaccines would start arriving mid-December with another shipment on the way in January.
The reporting comes as TGH announces it's given the first COVID antibody treatment in the state provided by the Trump administration's Operation Warp Speed. The treatment, made by Eli Lilly, is the first to be approved for emergency use authorization by the FDA.