9,000 doses of COVID vaccine expected to be administered this week
The Florida Department of Health and Lee County Government estimate 9,000 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine will be administered this week to frontline healthcare workers and seniors 65 and older.
Through last week, more than 11,000 individuals will have been vaccinated at Lee County sites open to the public. Additionally, FDOH-Lee has vaccinated many medical workers at separate sites since the vaccination became available here in December. This number of individuals does not include vaccinations issued by other entities such as Lee Health.
FDOH-Lee and the county ask residents to keep in mind that only so many doses of vaccine are made available to Lee County at a time. FDOH-Lee is the only Southwest Florida county health department to which the state issued new allotments of doses for this week. FDOH-Lee and the county ask the community for its patience.
The site near Southwest Florida International Airport off Daniels Parkway was to reopen for people with confirmed appointments on Tuesday and will run similarly to last week on Tuesday and Wednesday, with an estimated 2,400 people with appointments per day receiving shots.
The county is working on details related to future vaccination opportunities for seniors and frontline healthcare workers beginning this Thursday and into next week. Watch for updates at www.leegov.com/vaccine.
The website also is where the announcement of the reopening of the phone line to pre-register for an appointment will be posted when that information is available. The reservation line remained closed on Monday.
FDOH-Lee this week will contact the initial individuals who need a second dose to schedule it in advance of their due date. Second doses for first-responders and frontline health-care workers, who were the first to receive the vaccine, would not be due in Lee County before Jan. 18.
For the seniors who have received shots at Lee County sites, information will be forthcoming about scheduling the second dose. The state and county are collaborating on efficient ways to handle the number of people who need to be scheduled for second doses.
Lee Health, meanwhile has asked the public to refrain from calling regarding the availability of vaccine, saying its switchboard has been overwhelmed with people calling to make appointments.
“We are asking the community to discontinue calls to Lee Physician Group for vaccination appointments so that people who need to reach our hospitals may do so,” a release from Lee Health states. “Our limited supply of vaccinations for patients in Lee Physician Group offices is spoken for at this time. We will let the community know when we have more vaccines to offer to patients.”
The Lee County Sheriff’s Office also warned the public to be on the lookout for fraudulent schemes regarding the vaccine including:
• Calls asking to pay out of pocket to get the vaccine.
• Calls asking to pay to put your name on a vaccine waiting list or to get early access.
• Advertisements for vaccines through social media platforms, email, telephone calls, online or from unsolicited/unknown sources.
• Marketers offering to sell or ship doses of the vaccine for payment.
• Requests from someone unknown to an individual asking for a Social Security number, bank account information or credit card information.
Lee County residents who believe they have been the victim of COVID-19 fraud can report it to:
• Lee County Sheriff’s Office fraud line – 258-3292
• HHS-OIG Hotline: 1-800-HHS-TIPS or log on to tips.hhs.gov
• FBI Hotline: 1-800-CALL-FBI
• CMS/Medicare Hotline: 1-800-MEDICARE