COVID-19 vaccine rules can be confusing in South Florida. Here’s the latest news on where shots are available and who is eligible:
What’s new today?
▪ Want a COVID-19 vaccine right now? There are Pfizer one-day pop-ups in Hialeah, Homestead, Hialeah Gardens, Pompano Beach and West Palm Beach. The sites don’t take appointments, so you can just show up and wait in line.
▪ Do you need a Florida’s driver license or ID card to get a walk-up vaccination? Yes. However, there are different residency requirements for snowbirds, international or out-of-state students, and undocumented immigrants.
▪ In-person graduations are back for most Florida colleges and universities, including FIU, UM, MDC and Florida Memorial University. There are some COVID-19 restrictions, of course.
▪ Starting Tuesday, first-dose Pfizer shots will be available again at Miami Dade College North Campus and the other FEMA hub sites in Tampa, Jacksonville and Orlando. The change will increase vaccine access during the state’s ongoing J&J pause.
▪ Milander Center, 4800 Palm Ave. in Hialeah, is turning into a COVID-19 vaccine site again Monday. This time it will be offering Moderna’s vaccine to people 18 and older. Proof of Florida residency is required. The site doesn’t take appointments. Shots start at 9 a.m.
▪ Will Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine be available again soon? Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told CNN he thinks a decision will be made by Friday. He predicts the vaccine will be given the OK, with restrictions or warnings. The decision will depend on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Who can get COVID-19 vaccines in Florida and who can’t? Do you need proof of residency?
People 16 and older can get Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine in Florida. People 18 and older can get Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine. However, Florida has paused its J&J distribution following the recommendation of the CDC and FDA while officials investigate reports of rare blood clots.
Only Florida residents and snowbirds can get the vaccine, but there is no county residency requirement in place. That means that if you live in Miami-Dade, you can get the vaccine in Broward, or vice versa. You will need to show proof of Florida residency.
Teens 16 and 17 will need to have a parent or legal guardian with them the day of their vaccination along with documents that show proof of their age, such as their birth certificate or a current passport. Requirements may differ by site. Families also need to fill out a screening and consent form.
For snowbirds or part-time residents, the proof needs to be in the form of two documents such as a lease agreement and a utility bill no more than two months old, according to the Florida Division of Emergency Management.
Anyone else who lives in another state or country can no longer get the vaccine in Florida. Nonresidents who have already received the first dose in Florida will still be able to get the second dose.
The change was made to curb vaccine tourism, or people who travel from another state or country to get the vaccine in Miami or another part of the state.
Who should not get a COVID-19 vaccine?
People who have had a severe allergic reaction to ingredients in the vaccine or had a severe reaction after a previous dose. Ingredients of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, the Moderna vaccine and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine can be found on FDA.gov.
How many people have received the COVID-19 vaccine in Florida?
According to Sunday’s COVID-19 vaccine report, 526,855 people in Florida have completed the Johnson & Johnson single dose vaccine and 4,553,418 people have completed the two-dose series of either Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines.
Of those who have been fully vaccinated, 677,026 were Miami-Dade residents, 453,269 were Broward residents, 375,124 were Palm Beach residents and 19,581 were Monroe residents.
What COVID-19 vaccines are available in Florida? How many doses do I need?
Florida has three vaccines available: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson.
The Pfizer vaccine requires two shots, three weeks apart, and can be given to people 16 and older. Moderna’s vaccine requires two shots, one month apart, and can be given to people 18 and older. Johnson & Johnson’s is a single dose and can be given to people 18 and older. However, J&J distribution is paused while the CDC and FDA investigates reports of rare blood clots.
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are not interchangeable, however, which means that if your first shot was the Pfizer vaccine, your second shot cannot be the Moderna vaccine, according to the CDC.
COVID-19 vaccination sites in South Florida?
The following pharmacies offer COVID-19 vaccines in select stores by appointment-only:
▪ Publix stores in Florida offer vaccines. To check for a slot, visit publix.com/covid-vaccine/florida.
▪ Navarro Discount Pharmacies and CVS y más stores in Miami-Dade. Some traditional CVS stores across Florida also have doses. To check for availability, visit CVS.com or call customer service at 800-746-7287.
▪ Some Walmart and Sam’s Club stores offer vaccines, including in Broward and Miami-Dade counties. To schedule a COVID-19 vaccine appointment at Walmart, visit walmart.com/COVIDvaccine. For Sam’s Clubs, visit samsclub.com/covid.
▪ Some Walgreens stores offer vaccines. To check for availability visit https://www.walgreens.com/topic/promotion/covid-vaccine.jsp
Federally supported site in Miami-Dade
▪ Miami Dade College North campus is the first federally supported vaccination site to open in South Florida. Appointments are not required and walk-ins are welcome. The site is open every day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and is a walk-up, which means people wait in line instead of in their car.
The site will no longer offer the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine. Those who have already gotten their first dose of Pfizer will still be able to get their second shot at MDC North. There is also no J&J at the site for now.
Preregister for an appointment in Miami-Dade and Broward counties
You can preregister for an appointment in Florida through a statewide website and phone system.
Anyone who preregisters for a vaccine appointment will be notified once they’re eligible and a slot becomes available at state-supported or federally supported vaccination sites in their county, according to the Florida Division of Emergency Management, which is tasked with the state’s vaccine distribution.
Many of the state-run sites offer Pfizer, which means people 16 and older are eligible for a shot. Once you get an appointment, you will need to show proof that you are a Florida resident.
State-run sites in Miami-Dade County include loanDepot park (formerly Marlins Park) in Little Havana.
Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens is also a state-run site but it no longer requires appointments. Preregistration is still recommended through http://commvax.patientportalfl.com/
State-run sites in Broward County also no longer take appointments. This means you can just show-up and wait in line. This includes at Snyder Park in Fort Lauderdale, Coral Square Mall in Coral Springs, Markham Park in Sunrise, Tree Tops Park in Davie, Trade Winds Park in Coconut Creek and Central Regional Park in Lauderhill, TY Park in Hollywood and Pompano City Centre in Pompano Beach. For hours of operations, visit https://www.broward.org/CoronaVirus/Pages/Vaccination-Sites.aspx.
Remember, teens 16 and 17-years-old will need to have a parent or legal guardian with them the day of their vaccination and have the state’s COVID-19 vaccine screening and consent form. The form can be downloaded at floridahealthcovid19.gov.
Hospitals and other COVID-19 vaccination sites in Miami-Dade, Broward
The county has a website, miamidade.gov/vaccine, where it posts updates on where people can find and schedule COVID-19 vaccination appointments.
County-run sites include Zoo Miami, Tropical Park and the Homestead Sports Complex. The sites sometimes carry Pfizer and other times the sites have Moderna in stock.
You can preregister for an appointment through the online portal or by calling 305-614-2014. Once an appointment becomes available, you will be contacted.
Here are other places that have vaccines. Some locations may be vaccinating specific groups from Florida’s priority list so check the location’s website for details.
▪ The City of Opa-locka COVID-19 vaccine site is at the Helen Miller Center, 2331 NW 143rd St. The site is open every day from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Appointments are not required but pre-registration is recommended. To pre-register, visit Commvax.patientportalfl.com.
▪ Bucky Dent Park, 2250 W. 60th St., in Hialeah. Anyone who meets Florida’s vaccine criteria can get a shot here. No appointments are needed. You will wait standing in line, instead of in your car. The site is open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. or until supplies run out.
▪ Hialeah residents who are unable to leave their homes can call 305-863-2955 to schedule a homebound vaccination.
▪ Overtown Youth Center, 1551 NW First Ave, is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.. The state-run site does not require appointments. You will wait standing in line, instead of in your car. You must fall into one of Florida’s priority groups to get the vaccine.
▪ Oak Grove Park, 690 NE 159th St. is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. The state-run site does not require appointments. You will wait standing in line, instead of in your car. You must fall into one of Florida’s priority groups to get the vaccine.
▪ Homebound seniors can email their name and phone number to HomeboundVaccine@em.myflorida.com and someone will get back to you about setting up an appointment. You can also call 866-779-6121 to schedule an appointment.
▪ Jackson Health System, the county’s public hospital network. To check for available appointments, visit https://jhsmiami.org/comvac/.
▪ Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach schedules appointments online. To check for updates, visit msmc.com/coronavirus-update/
▪ Baptist Health is one of the county’s largest private hospitals. To check for updates, visit Baptisthealth.net/vaccine.
▪ Seniors who seek care with Leon Medical Centers can call customer service at 305-642-5366 to schedule a free COVID-19 vaccination appointment. If you need transportation, let the operator know so they can also schedule a driver to pick you up. Appointments will be scheduled until Leon runs out of vaccines.
▪ Nicklaus Children’s Hospital is offering vaccines to young adults ages 16 to 21. To check for slots, visit Nicklauschildrens.org/Covid19Vaccine.
▪ All veterans in Miami-Dade, Broward and Monroe counties, along with their spouses and caregivers can get vaccinated through the Miami VA Healthcare System. Appointments are not required. For locations and more information, visit https://www.miami.va.gov/services/covid-19-vaccines.asp.
▪ Holy Cross Health has details on how to request an appointment at www.holy-cross.com/covidvaccine.
▪ Broward Health, to check for appointments, visit https://www.browardhealth.org/pages/being-healthy-vaccine
Listen to today's top stories from the Miami Herald:
▪ Memorial Healthcare System and Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital sometimes have vaccines in stock. You can check for appointments through your MyChart portal, https://mychart.mhs.net.
The appointment-only vaccine locations listed in the website above are:
The Memorial Regional Conference Center, 3501 Johnson St. in Hollywood, noon to 7:30 p.m. Mondays, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Tuesday through Friday.
Memorial Specialty Pharmacy, 9581 Premier Pkwy. in Miramar, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
▪ All Cleveland Clinic Florida locations, including its Weston campus, schedule appointments for patient who have seen a Cleveland Clinic Florida provider in the last two years for outpatient or inpatient care. For eligibility criteria and how to check for appointments, visit https://my.clevelandclinic.org/landing/covid-19-vaccine/florida
▪ Select MD Now Urgent Care locations have COVID-19 vaccines by appointment only in South Florida. To check for availability, visit mymdnow.com/covid-19/vaccine/
COVID-19 vaccines in Monroe County?
More places are offering the COVID-19 vaccine in the Florida Keys.
Eligible Florida residents can now get vaccinated at Winn-Dixie stores in Key West and Tavernier, and at all Publix stores along the island chain. Appointments are required.