June 19, 2022 Updated 11:26 A.M. ET
TALLAHASSEE (FLV) – The Florida Department of Health told Florida’s Voice that their approach to vaccine recommendation and distribution is responsible for the wide accessibility of COVID-19 vaccines for parents, not the Biden Administration’s fast-tracking of vaccine rollouts.
“The Florida Department of Health does not recommend COVID-19 vaccination for most children, and this is exactly why we put this process back into the hands of providers. This is a decision that needs to be made between parents and their child’s pediatrician,” they said.
Florida’s Voice learned that the White House plans to take credit for Florida’s vaccine availability by citing their supposed ‘fast-tracking’ of the COVID-19 jab to Florida.
“Contrary to disinformation circulated by the media and the White House, the vaccine ordering process has not changed in Florida. Health care providers have the ability to order FDA authorized COVID-19 vaccines through Florida SHOTS,” they continued.
Since the early stages of the vaccine rollouts in the Sunshine State, Gov. Ron DeSantis prioritized vulnerable populations in distributing the vaccines.
On Oct. 6, 2021, DeSantis touted putting “seniors first” was the “correct approach to vaccine distribution.”
“As the COVID vaccines first became available, I made it clear that in Florida we were going to put Seniors First to make sure the most vulnerable received the protection they needed,” he noted.
DeSantis explained that Florida always prioritized seniors: “Following Florida’s lead, earlier this year the federal government reversed course from prioritizing younger populations for vaccinations to recommending that states prioritize seniors age 65 and older. When I decided to put Seniors First, the data clearly showed that prioritizing vaccines for seniors would save the most lives. It was the right thing to do, and I am glad to see the federal government has continued to acknowledge this reality.”
While Florida prioritized vulnerable populations, decisions of vaccination were left up to the parent and pediatrician, giving the elderly increased supply and availability.
This March, Florida’s Health Department released new guidance on COVID-19 vaccines for children, saying that healthy children aged five to 17 “may not benefit” from the currently available vaccine, and that the risks may outweigh any benefits.
The Department lists multiple factors that “may” cause risks to outweigh benefits of the vaccine, including their already low risk of severe illness to COVID-19, high prevalence of immunity in children, absence of data supporting vaccination benefit on children with immunity, higher than anticipated adverse events in vaccine recipients, reduced efficacy in children 5-17, and the risk of myocarditis (heart inflammation) due to the vaccine.
“In general, healthy children with no significant underlying health conditions under 16 years old are at little to no risk of severe illness complications from COVID-19,” the guidance said.
A press release cited an HHS study that found Florida’s Senior First policy reduced senior infections by 17,000, hospitalizations by 6,700, and deaths by 2,400. DeSantis’ office also touted Florida as having one of the highest senior vaccination rates in the United Sates.
Florida is the only sate to not order COVID-19 vaccines for kids aged five and under, continuing a data-based recommendation from the Florida Department of Health under Surgeon General Joseph A. Ladapo who advises against vaccinating young, healthy children.
“There’s not going to be any state programs that are going to give COVID jabs to infants, toddlers and newborns,” DeSantis said. “That’s not something that we think is appropriate. So that’s not where we’re going to be utilizing our resources in that regard.”
The Biden Administration encourages vaccinations for children, and the Food and Drug Administration authorized the Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines for children down to six months of age.
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Florida’s Voice is a patriotic news network that you can trust to deliver the truth with no hidden agenda. Founder and Editor in Chief Brendon Leslie left his job in mainstream news to practice journalism as it should be, unbiased and unbossed.