MIAMI– Miami-Dade County has the largest variety of seniors, Latinos, Covid-19 infections, and deaths in Florida, but it’s lagging in the variety of individuals over 65 that are being immunized.
According to Florida’s information, Miami-Dade has administered the largest quantity of vaccines, but an analysis of the information by Florida International University epidemiologist, Dr. Mary Jo Trepka finds the county lags others when considering population size.
Just 29.6 percent of the 65 and older population of Miami-Dade that number 477,205 has received a minimum of one vaccine, compared to the state average of 34.5 percent, Trepka informed NBC News.
Palm Beach County, where previous Pres. Donald Trump now lives, has actually vaccinated over 46 percent of their elders and has a smaller size of elders, at 358,002
” We’re attempting to keep down the morbidity and mortality and until we get our senior citizens immunized at higher levels, we’re not going to be able to take a big bite into hospitalizations,” Trepka stated.
The state does not release information on the number of vaccines are distributed to each county. Trepka warned there are numerous aspects to consider, such as individuals crossing county lines to get a shot, and whether there is more vaccine hesitancy amongst neighborhoods in some counties versus others.
However county and city authorities are requiring more vaccines. Miami-Dade County’s mayor Daniella Levine Cava sent out a letter to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently asking him to “urgently increase the volume” of vaccines in the county.
During an invitation-only occasion at the White House on Friday with a bipartisan group of mayors and governors, the mayor of the city of Miami, Francis Suarez, asked for more vaccines in order to speed up the process.
Florida State Senator Annette Taddeo, a Democrat who represents an area of Miami, stated the current circumstance was “insane.”
” We’re not getting them from the guv,” Taddeo said about vaccines. “This has to do with fairness and making certain that we are not playing favorites.”
Taddeo stated she has reached out to the White House over her concerns. One option she says she and others think would work is to get the vaccines directly from the federal government.
Worrying researchers is that Florida leads the country with the B. 1.1.7 variant that originated in the U.K. There are concerns the version might speed up the amount of cases and deaths before sufficient individuals are immunized. The Centers for Illness Control and Prevention cautioned last month that B. 1.1.7 might end up being the primary stress in the United States by March.
Dr. Olveen Carrasquillo, chief of general medication at the University of Miami Health System, stated much of the injustice in vaccine distribution is because of bad preparation at the state and federal levels, beginning last year. “I’m really upset and upset we didn’t plan this three or four months earlier when we need to have,” said Carrasquillo.
Carrasquillo is positive that the logistical and supply problems will get solved in the next few months as more vaccines are made and dispersed. However aside from that, what stresses him the most is the spread of false information that is making some in the neighborhood fearful of getting vaccinated.
” They understand how to state it, how to get people scared,” Carrasquillo stated about those spreading out incorrect information about the vaccine that is frightening some into not taking it. “They understand how to reach our individuals, which’s what issues me.”
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Carmen Sesin is a reporter based in Miami.