Published On: Thu, Jan 7th, 2021

Palm Beach County Mayor Dave Kerner Updates Stakeholders on Vaccine Rollout

By Robert S Weinroth

Mayor Kerner speaks as Commissioner Sachs and Vice Mayor Weinroth look on

During an afternoon news conference at the Palm Beach County Emergency Operations Center on January 7, County Mayor Dave Kerner updated residents on the current state of vaccination within Palm Beach County.

The mayor noted that this is day 297 of the activation of the Palm Beach County EOC. He signed the 44th Local State of Emergency this week.

Mayor Kerner said that the Palm Beach County Division of Emergency Management is supporting State efforts of the Florida Department of Health Palm Beach County and the Health Care District of Palm Beach County to vaccinate priority populations in accordance with the Governor’s Executive Order number 20-315.

The COVID-19 vaccination allotment and distribution of the vaccine is under control of the State of Florida through its Department of Health and the Florida Division of Emergency Management.

Vaccine supply has been limited (FDOH-PBC received 24,000 doses) since the beginning and likely will be limited for some time, so the initial allocation of doses must focus on priority populations with subsequent expansion to broader populations as supplies grow.

Palm Beach County area hospitals received separate allocations directly from the State and must dispense according to the emergency order. Long-term care facilities and nursing homes vaccinations are being managed under federal and state initiatives.

Based on the Governor’s announcement on January 4, 2021, there will be some deployment by the State directly to churches in underserved communities. The county will support these effort as needed. Federally Qualified Health Centers in the county will be receiving vaccines and proceeding with registering the high priority population to receive vaccinations at their facilities. 

The mayor stressed that the focus now is keeping each other safe until the vaccine is widely distributed.

Dr. Alina Alonso from FDOH-PBC said they are currently vaccinating 500 people per day including health care personnel and persons 65 years of age or older that have requested an appointment through their email system.

Emails sent into FDOH requesting a vaccination will be held in queue, and as vaccine doses become available, those individuals will be contacted by FDOH. Vaccination appointments are based on vaccine availability. They have the capability to vaccinate 1000 people per day, but not the vaccine supplies to do that.

Doses coming into Palm Beach County are under the control the State. We understand the amount of doses and the priority vaccination population is vastly different. This wide disparity between supply and demand has driven the vaccination strategy to face the challenge of not having sufficient doses to implement large-scale vaccination operations at this time.

As the vaccine supply increases over the next several months, vaccination efforts and vaccination strategy will be expanded. This strategy will utilize fixed regionally located vaccination centers, points of distribution, clinic operations, and mobile pop-up community sites. Palm Beach County is ready, prepared and equipped to facilitate the mass distribution of vaccines.

Our current challenge is in the lack of supply. It is our hope that the vaccine will become more readily available for distribution in the coming weeks. Therefore, we need to remain steadfast and not let our patience run thin after we have been so strong and resilient as we enter our 11th month dealing with COVID-19.

State Attorney Dave Aronberg stated that there are scams around the state that are charging for the vaccine. There is no cost for the vaccine except possibly a $15 registration fee charged by some. There have been no cases of vaccine fraud in Palm Beach County so far.

Commissioners all reiterated Dr. Alonso and Mayor Kerner’s points and pledged to support the FDOH-PBC and do whatever is needed to secure more vaccine and ensure the distribution of it to as many county residents as possible, as quickly and equitably as possible.

Palm Beach County Testing

FITTEAM Ballpark of the Palm Beaches 5444 Haverhill Rd., West Palm Beach, 33407 Drive-through site Tuesday through Saturday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Any age; with or without symptoms. PCR/Molecular Testing appointment only 8 a.m. – Noon (Conducted by the Heath Care District of PBC) 
Call 561-642-1000 for an appointment. Rapid Antigen Testing no appointment necessary 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. To preregister with your information for antigen testing go to: patientportalfl.com/s/

Health Care District of PBC (HCD) C. L. Brumback Primary Care Clinic at Lakeside Medical Center 39200 Hooker Hwy, Belle Glade, 33430 Walk-up site, appointments recommended; Monday through Friday; 8 a.m. – Noon Any age; with or without symptoms. Call 561-642-1000 for an appointment. PCR/Molecular and Rapid Antigen Testing.

HCD C. L. Brumback Primary Care Clinic West Palm Beach 1150 45th St., West Palm Beach, 33407 Walk-up site, appointments recommended; Monday through Friday; 8 a.m.  – 11 a.m. Any age; with or without symptoms Call 561-642-1000 for an appointment PCR/Molecular Testing

HCD C. L. Brumback Primary Care Clinic Jupiter 411 W. Indiantown Rd., Jupiter, 33458 Walk-up site, appointments recommended; Monday through Friday; 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. Any age; with or without symptoms Call 561-642-1000 for an appointment PCR/Molecular Testing

HCD C.L. Brumback Primary Care Clinic Delray Beach 225 S. Congress Ave, Delray Beach, 33445 Walk-up site, appointments recommended; Monday through Friday; 8 a.m. – Noon Any age; with or without symptoms Call 561-642-1000 for an appointment PCR Molecular Testing

HCD “Scout” and “Hero” Mobile Clinic Outreach Walk-up site, any age; with or without symptoms Varying locations and hours as scheduled PCR/Molecular Testing

FAU Tech Runway at Florida Atlantic University 901 NW 35th Street, Boca Raton, 33431 Walk up site, Tuesday through Saturday from 8 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Any age, with or without symptoms PCR/Molecular Testing appointment only 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Call 800.209.7919 for an appointment Rapid Antigen Testing no appointment necessary 8 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Town Center at Boca Raton Mall (This site will be closing on Tuesday, January 12th) 6000 Glades Rd., Boca Raton, 33431, at the Sears parking lot Walk up site; every day from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Any age; with or without symptoms No appointment necessary. PCR/Molecular and Rapid Antigen Testing

South County Civic Center 16700 Jog Road, Delray Beach, 33446 Walk up site; Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Any age, with or without symptoms. No appointment necessary. PCR/Molecular and Rapid Antigen Testing

Homebound Resident Testing Residents eligible include homebound elderly or individuals with disabilities who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and cannot leave their homes to access one of the drive-up or walk-up test collection sites. Residents who believe they are eligible for the in-home testing option should call 561-712-6400 for a pre-qualifying assessment. The testing line is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Resources

VACCINE INFORMATION

Vaccinations have begun in Palm Beach County, pursuant to the Governor’s Executive Order 20-315, for long term care facility staff, persons 65 years of age and older and healthcare personnel with direct patient contact.

At this time appointments through the Florida Department of Health in Palm Beach County (FDOH-Palm Beach), should only be requested by sending an email to [email protected].

Please remember to include your name, phone number, and date of birth. All emails are being received and will be contacted in order with further instructions as appointments slots and options become available. Vaccination appointments are based on dosage availability, we appreciate your continued patience.

***No vaccines will be given without an appointment. Please do not show up at any of our FDOH locations for a vaccine, or to request an appointment. This should be done by email only at this time.*

Additional updates on local vaccine distribution will be communicated through palmbeach.floridahealth.gov, twitter account @HealthyFLPBC, and local media.

Make sure you speak with your primary care provider to answer any questions you have about the vaccine before you receive it.

Vaccine FAQ’s

Florida Health Vaccine Information Page

COVID-19 for Palm Beach County Information Page

PALM BEACH COUNTY COVID-19 VACCINATION PLANNING

Pursuant to direction from Governor Ron DeSantis, the Florida Department of Health and local health departments are responsible for receipt and distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine on behalf of the State.  Initial priorities for distribution were recently redefined in the Governor’s Executive Order 20-315: health care personnel; individuals 65 years of age and older; and long-term care facility residents and staff.

County staff are working closely with the Department of Health Palm Beach County and the Health Care District of Palm Beach County to complete the strategies for our local efforts to distribute the vaccine in accordance with the Governor’s priorities.  Our local efforts will be in addition to the direct rollouts of the vaccine by the State of Florida or direct deliveries by federal agencies or contractors. Our strategies will include designated PODs (points of distribution) at both fixed and mobile locations that will be accessible by walk-up and/or drive-up.  

QUARANTINE VERSUS ISOLATION

Quarantine keeps someone who was in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 away from others. If you had close contact with a person who has COVID-19:

-Stay home until 14 days after your last contact.

-Check your temperature twice a day and watch for symptoms of COVID-19.

-If possible, stay away from people who are at higher-risk for getting sick from COVID-19

Isolation keeps someone who is sick or tested positive for COVID-19 without symptoms away from others, even in their own home. If you are sick and think or know you have COVID-19:

Stay home until: 
-at least 10 days since symptoms first appeared

-at least 24 hours with no fever without fever-reducing medication

-symptoms have improved

If you tested positive for COVID-19, but do not have symptoms, stay home until 10 days have passed since your positive test. If you live with others, stay in a specific “sick room” or area and away from other people or animals, including pets. Use a separate bathroom, if available.

About the Author

- Robert Weinroth is a 27 year resident of Boca Raton where he is an attorney, businessman, former member of the City Council (where he served for four years) and currently serves as an elected member of the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners. Commissioner Weinroth went to Boston’s Northeastern University where he earned a BSBA in Management. He went on to earn his Juris Doctor at New England School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey and the Supreme Court of the United States. Weinroth served as president and general counsel of Freedom Medical Services Inc, an accredited medical supply company in Boca Raton. FREEDOMED® represented the realization of an entrepreneurial dream. Weinroth, and his wife Pamela operated the company for 16 years, eventually selling the business in 2016. Weinroth takes great pride in his past work as a volunteer Guardian ad Litem for the 15th Judicial Circuit, advocating for the needs of abused and neglected children deemed dependent by the Court. After serving on multiple community boards and committees, Weinroth was elected to the Boca Raton City Council in 2014. During his tenure, he served as CRA Vice-chair and Deputy Mayor and was appointed to a number of county boards including the Boca Raton Airport Authority, the Palm Tran Service Board, the Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency, the Treasure Coast Planning Council and was elected a board member of the Palm Beach County League of Cities. Commissioner Weinroth serves as County Vice-Mayor and has been appointed Chair of the Solid Waste Authority, a board member of the PBC Transportation Planning Agency, and alternate representative on the Treasure Coast Planning Agency and several other county and regional boards. Robert, Pamela and their two dogs, Sierra and Siggy, are proud to call Boca Raton home.

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