The top health department official in Marion County said Tuesday that more than 42,000 residents have been vaccinated for COVID-19 – a number he is quite proud of.
Mark Lander, who serves as director of the Department of Health in Marion County, told Marion County commissioners during their regularly scheduled meeting that the vaccination effort against the deadly virus is working smoothly at the location in the Paddock Mall. He also offered praise for the others involved in the joint venture – AdventHealth Ocala, Marion County Emergency Management and the Paddock Mall staff.
Of the vaccinations given to Marion County residents, Lander said 22,377 were first doses and 19,724 were second doses. He said 32,762 of those doses went to residents 65 and older, which represents 30 percent of the seniors living in the county.
Lander also said that 78 percent of all COVID-19 vaccines administered in Marion County were given to those 65 and older. Vaccines also have been administered to frontline medical staff including emergency medical services personnel and long-term care staff and residents. Lander added that hospitals can vaccinate patients suffering from underlying health conditions.
Moving forward, Lander said his department is continuing to whittle down a list of 50,000 residents seeking the vaccine. As of Tuesday, he said 25,000-30,000 of those on the list have received a vaccine.
Lander also told commissioners that 72 percent of all residents in nursing homes and long-term care centers in Marion County have been vaccinated. He said Walgreens and CVS staff are administering the doses with assistance from the state.
Lander said those wishing to register for a vaccine can visit myvaccine.fl.gov. They also can call 866-201-6768. To find a list of vaccine locations in Florida, please visit floridahealthcovid19.gov/vaccines/vaccine-locator.