Florida governor announces delay in next Pfizer vaccine shipments


TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The governor of Florida says shipments of hundreds of thousands more doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine headed to the state are on hold, and he doesn’t know whether they’ll ever arrive.

Florida received its first shipment earlier this week, with doses distributed to five hospitals across the state.

Governor Ron Desantis announced Tuesday that additional shipments could be delayed because of what he calls “production issues.”

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“Initially we thought we’d get about 200,000 additional Pfizer doses, and the third week of December, or the last week of December, the third week of the shipments, we were scheduled to get about 250,000,” the governor said.

“Those Week 2 and Week 3 shipments of Pfizer are basically on hold right now. We’re just not sure with the production,” DeSantis said.

Tampa General Hospital made history earlier this week when it became one of five Florida hospitals to receive doses of the vaccine. The hospital received 20,000 doses and is expected to vaccinate 400 to 500 people each day.

TGH is also distributing vaccines to other local hospitals like AdventHealth Tampa. On Wednesday, AdventHealth was expected to administer vaccines to 300 workers with the highest risk of exposure. The hospital plans to vaccinate 13,000 staff members over the next several weeks.

The FDA could authorize the Moderna vaccine for emergency use later this week. DeSantis says Florida would get 367,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine by early next week. The state would receive a total of 1.16 million doses of Moderna and Pfizer vaccines by the end of December if things get back on track.

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