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Walmart and CVS Pharmacies to join Publix in providing COVID vaccines in Florida

covid Virus Outbreak Vaccine Race
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

It’s Wednesday, so that means another round of Publix vaccine appointments were available as of 6 a.m. for Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River Counties.
But by 7:45 a.m. all the appointments were filled. The next appointment availability is Friday beginning at 7:00 a.m.
You must go online to book an appointment, you can’t call or visit a Publix pharmacy. And, to make it easier for you the scheduling button has been moved from the bottom to the top of the page.

Hundreds of thousands of seniors and healthcare workers have been signing on to the Publix website at each opportunity trying to secure a vaccine appointment.

The appointments booked today will be scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 4 to Sunday, Feb. 7.

Average Floridians may be able to receive a COVID vaccine in the next few months.

To book an appointment, click here.

The Biden administration next week will begin shipping COVID-19 vaccine doses directly to well-known retailers across the country, in a broad partnership the White House billed Tuesday as a crucial expansion of the nation’s vaccination effort.

Walmart and Sam’s Club pharmacies will be administering vaccines through the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program at pharmacies in 22 states, including Florida, Walmart U.S. vice president of health and wellness operations Amanda Jenkins wrote on the company’s website.

The vaccinations are expected to start late next week, and those eligible will be able to make an appointment at Appointments will be scheduled based on how many vaccines the retail giant receives.

“Walmart is proud to be selected by both CDC and state governments based on a number of factors, including our ability to reach specific populations that are at risk of experiencing severe illness from COVID-19,” Jenkins wrote. “Ninety percent of the country lives within 10 miles of a Walmart, and we can make a real difference in our communities by partnering with state and local governments to improve access to the vaccine.”

Also among the retailers with Florida locations named as partners in the federal program Tuesday: Kroger, Costco, Albertsons and Winn-Dixie. The Trump administration had announced a similar list of chains in November for its own planned vaccine distribution network.

Also Tuesday, the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced it is directing $245 million to Florida for its COVID-19 vaccine program, which it said will reimburse all costs of the state’s vaccination program for 90 days, including storing, handling and administering doses; medical and support staff; leasing facilities for vaccine events and waste disposal.

“Good news,” U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Winter Park, said in a tweet. “After months of urging the federal government to send additional resources to our state, I’m happy to share [FEMA] will provide Florida with $245M to fund vaccination efforts. This funding will help us put an end to this deadly pandemic.”

CVS and Walgreens already separately had partnered with the federal government to vaccinate residents of long-term care facilities, but as of yet had not made similar arrangements with Florida.

Eventually, the plan is that COVID-19 vaccines will be the same as receiving a flu shot at a pharmacy or doctor’s office, but, that’s still a long way away, according to health officials.