Skip to comments.FL Receives Smallpox Vaccine ["Operation Vaccinate FL" planned by Gov Jeb Bush's Domestic Security]
Posted on 02/04/2003 6:17:55 PM PST by summer
FLORIDA RECEIVES SMALLPOX VACCINE
Tuesday, February 4, 2003
TALLAHASSEE- The Florida Department of Health (DOH) has received a shipment of smallpox vaccine from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The vaccine will be stored in strategic locations throughout the state for use during Stage 1 of Operation Vaccinate Florida, scheduled to begin on February 10.
"This shipment is designated for members of hospital and county health department smallpox response teams," said DOH Secretary John O. Agwunobi, M.D., M.B.A. "This first stage of smallpox vaccinations is expected to last approximately 30 to 60 days."
Agwunobi said DOH officials at the state and local level have continued to work closely with federal, state and local agencies, public and private representatives, legislators and other elected officials in their planning for the vaccination campaign. The planning was based upon the framework for collaboration provided by Governor Jeb Bush through his Domestic Security Task Forces at the state and regional levels.
Operation Vaccinate Florida involves the voluntary immunization of Florida residents in three stages, with varying degrees of time between each stage:
The first stage, which is scheduled to begin on February 10, will include the vaccination of hospital response teams and county health department personnel. DOH estimates that approximately 33,000 doses will be provided to protect these health care professionals;
The second stage, which at this point has no scheduled start state, is expected to include the vaccination of first responders such as law enforcement officers, fire fighters, emergency medical crews, etc., as well as other health care professionals. DOH estimates that during the second stage, approximately 300,000 to 400,000 doses will be provided to protect and prepare these individuals; and
The third and final stage, should the federal government determine the need to proceed, would include the voluntary vaccination of the general public. DOH estimates that up to 10 million individuals might be eligible in Florida for Stage 3 vaccinations against smallpox.
An as yet undetermined number of the population will be ineligible to receive the vaccine due to pregnancy, eczema and various other contraindications.
Agwunobi [FL DOH] once again emphasized that he has received no information that would lead him to believe that the threat of a smallpox attack has changed or that attacks are imminent; however, given the current status of the war against terrorism and other potential global events, he continues to believe it is prudent to aggressively prepare.
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