The Florida National Guard (FLNG) will receive 1,100 Moderna vaccines next week to inoculate select troops serving on COVID-19 related missions.
The vaccines come after the National Guard Bureau selected Florida and 14 other states to participate in a COVID-19 vaccination program. The Department of Defense provided the vaccines based on the rough number of troops serving COVID-19 related orders.
Looking ahead, shots-in-the-arm will begin Dec. 22. and will be administered by FLNG medical detachments. The Moderna vaccine requires two doses separated by 28 days.
While troops are not required to take the vaccine, FLNG Adjutant General James Eifert encouraged all to take it.
He advised it may soon become mandatory for service members, similar to the influenza vaccine.
“I want to reiterate to you that the safety of our Florida Guard members is a top priority,” Eifert, who recently recovered from COVID-19, wrote. “I am committed to protecting your health – and the health of your families – however possible. That is why I strongly encourage any Guardsman offered vaccination in this first wave to take advantage of it.”
Eifert expects the FLNG to receive more vaccines for troops as production and distribution increases.
Across the country, state National Guard units have played a significant role in battling the COVID-19 pandemic, with tasks ranging from COVID-19 testing and contact tracing to vaccine distribution.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis last week announced the National Guard will man “strike teams” to supplement vaccination for long-term care residents in Florida. Department of Health and Florida Division of Emergency Management staff will also man the teams.
As of Dec. 17, more than 825 Florida guardsmen and women remain engaged in COVID-19 related missions. In all, more than 960 virus-related missions have been conducted this year. The missions range from food distribution, logistics, COVID-19 testing and more.
The FLNG has assisted in more than 2.5 million COVID-19 tests since the onset of the pandemic.
Below is the Florida National Guard Vaccination Program provided by Eifert:
December 17, 2020 at 3:45 pm
Thank you! Get The vaccine! We are learning about the necessity to VALUE every human and the jobs! This pandemic has proven. All jobs are necessary!
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