Jacksonville, FL. — Today, those who are 16 and older are eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine in Florida.
Sites across the state saw an early morning rush and now the race is on for getting as many people vaccinated as possible
Regency Square Mall administered 2,790 people in its first day of 16+ eligibility.
With the first three hours of opening, the site administered 1,100 doses of the vaccine.
This is something many in the 16-40 age group have been waiting on for a long time and after patiently waiting their turn, they’re aking advantage of a life saving opportunity.
According to the Florida Department of Health, those ages 15-34 are responsible for over 33,000 covid-19 cases in Duval county since the pandemic began - that’s 36% of duval’s total cases.
30-year old Luke House remains optimistic.
“Trying to do what I can to stop the spread and stay safe,” he said.
He received his first dose at the Regency Square Mall in hopes of a brighter future.
“I believe in listening to the CDC and our medical experts and following guidelines to keep everyone safe,” House said. “That was my number one priority this past year, making sure I can do what I can to be part of the solution.”
Here’s how it works - Regency Square Mall offers the Pfizer vaccine, which is authorized for use of those 16 and older.
Those who are 16 or 17 must come with a leagl guardian and fill out a department of health consent form. They say its here if you don’t bring one and they also ask that you bring an I.D. with you.
Keith Bergsma said he has at-risk family members and even compared it to voting, saying it’s become a civic duty to get vaccinated.
“It’s been a long year, everyone has been at home trying not to catch this obviously and helping the immunity of the community is a smart thing to do,” he said.
Right now just under 250,000 people in Duval county have received at least one dose of the vaccine, but this age drop of 24 years is expected to propel those numbers to new heights.