Seminole County

Here’s how the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is being distributed in Florida

The hottest new weapon in the fight against the coronavirus is the single-shot vaccine from Johnson & Johnson.

However, there is confusion and controversy across Central Florida over how and where those brand-new shots can be administered.

To date, the state has received 175,000 doses of the vaccine.

READ: Appointments for Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine fully booked at Publix: Here’s when more will open up

Several local counties have the vaccine, but are still putting plans in place to distribute them.

Brevard received 4,500 doses and are still working on plans for a closed POD Saturday for school staff, and first responders 50 and up to give out the doses.

Volusia County is taking a similar approach with their Johnson & Johnson doses, and Seminole County was finally given the green light to use some of theirs.

READ: Seminole County asked to return 3,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine

Seminole County received 3,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson, but was then told they were going to be taken back and send them somewhere else.

But over the last few days, Seminole County Emergency Manager Alan Harris was in contact with state officials, telling them about special programs that could utilize those doses, such as their faith-based initiative, Hispanic outreach program, the school staff and first responder site and others.

“One of those was a qualifier, and allowed us to keep 2,000,” Harris said.

READ: Thousands of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines arrive in Central Florida

Teachers, firefighters and law enforcement officers 50 and up who scheduled appointments at the Sanford Civic Center received their single shot on Wednesday.

Those who are getting shots Thursday and Friday will also get Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

On Wednesday, Publix opened its first appointment portal offering people the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for the first time, and it filled up quickly.

READ: Gov. DeSantis cancels all fines related to “unprecedented” local COVID-19 restrictions

President Joe Biden is directing the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to purchase an additional 100 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.

When those doses will be available is unclear, but Biden is adamant that the U.S. will produce enough vaccines for every adult in the U.S. by the end of May.

Adam Poulisse,

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.