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DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH IN BAY COUNTY TO CELEBRATE MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. DAY BY VACCINATING 300 SENIORS

January 15, 2021

Panama City, FL— The Florida Department of Health in Bay County will provide 300 vaccines to seniors 65 and older on Monday, January 16, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. All appointments for these time slots are filled. No drive-up appointments will be accepted.

“Normally, Martin Luther King Jr. Day is an observed state holiday where our offices are closed, but this year we are following Dr. King’s example of service and making it a special day to provide much needed COVID-19 vaccines to our community.”, said Sandon S. Speedling, MHS, CPM, CPH, Administrator and Health Officer, Florida Department of Health in Bay County.

A total of 5,833 Bay County residents have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine. Fourteen persons have completed the series.

Publix is now offering COVID-19 vaccination at all five Bay County locations. To make an appointment, visit https://www.publix.com/covid-vaccine. Governor Ron DeSantis announced this partnership on Tuesday in Bay County. To learn more click HERE. People who are not in this priority population for vaccination are asked to assist family members, friends or neighbors who may need help with online registration.

DOH-Bay is not currently accepting appointments. Due to very limited available doses of COVID-19 vaccine at this time, DOH-Bay will reserve upcoming appointments for seniors who are unable to book online. If you have Internet access or assistance with online registration, please reserve our phone lines for those who have limited digital literacy.

When vaccine supply increases, DOH-Bay will announce additional COVID-19 mass vaccination events. To learn more sign-up for alerts by texting ‘bayhealth’ to 888777 or visiting https://bit.ly/bayhealthalert.

Please remember there are tens of thousands of people trying to register at this time for a limited number of vaccines. This is a historic mass vaccination effort and it is going to take some time to vaccinate everyone who wants to be vaccinated. Your patience and understanding are essential and appreciated.

Before Your Appointment

Consent forms for the Moderna vaccine are available at Bay.FloridaHealth.gov. Those making an appointment are encouraged to review the consent information and consult with their healthcare provider before receiving the vaccine. If possible, please print and complete the consent form and bring it to the vaccination appointment. Anyone who has allergic reactions that require an epi pen should bring it to the appointment. The CDC recommends deferring vaccination if you have received another vaccine in the past 14 days.

COVID-19 Vaccines for Healthcare Providers

DOH-Bay is also working to provide vaccine to frontline healthcare workers who are not affiliated with a hospital. Please complete the COVID-19 Vaccine Planning Survey if not receiving the vaccine from a parent company or hospital. Providers should coordinate to ensure that there is only one reply per organization.

COVID-19 Vaccine General Information

While the COVID-19 vaccine is a monumental step toward getting this disease under control in Florida, the department continues to encourage common-sense precautions against the spread of the virus, including frequent hand washing, wearing face masks, maintaining six feet of social distancing and staying home when sick.

As additional vaccine supplies become available and the State provides priority groups for vaccinating, DOH-Bay will follow and share those plans. For the most current information on COVID-19 vaccination plans in Florida, please visit https://floridahealthcovid19.gov/covid-19-vaccines-in-florida/. The COVID-19 vaccine report is available HERE.

COVID-19 Testing

To reach maximum capacity for COVID-19 vaccination, DOH-Bay is temporarily suspending testing for COVID-19. If you need a COVID-19 test, please check with your healthcare provider first. Please visit Bay.FloridaHealth.gov for testing options or see the information below on testing provided by Bay County.

Bay County Testing
Lynn Haven Sports Park, 2201 Recreation Drive

Panama City Sports Park, 50 Chip Seal Parkway
Hours: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Tuesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Criteria: Testing is available to adults over 18 and children ages 5 and up who are accompanied by an adult.
Cost: Free

Test Type: Antigen (rapid in 20 minutes) and PCR
Appointment required. To make an appointment, visit BayHealthCOVID19.org.

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About the Florida Department of Health 

The Department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at @HealthyFla. For more information about the Florida Department of Health, please visit www.FloridaHealth.gov.