Florida residents will now need proof of residency to get the Covid shot at state-run vaccination sites, amid concerns that wealthy out-of-towners were gaming the system to get the treatment early.
"We’re only doing [vaccines] for Florida, Florida residents," Florida governor Ron DeSantis said during a Tuesday news conference. "You got to live here either full-time or at least part-time. "
The state initially opened vaccination to all those 65 and older and didn’t require a proof of residency, and soon long lines of seniors were camped out, some overnight, at vaccination sites. The new policy took effect Wednesday in Seminole County, near Orlando, and will expand to other parts of the state in coming days.
Page Six reported that wealthy New York City real estate moguls Bill and David Mack arranged for wealthy friends to fly down to Florida and join members of an elite Florida country club to get vaccinated at a retirement home where David is chairman.
“Several not-for-profit health and senior care organizations in Florida are undertaking major vaccination efforts,” The facility, Joseph L. Morse Health Center in Palm Beach, told the publication in a statement. “David and Bill Mack were asked to assist a not-for-profit healthcare institution with the organization of its vaccination campaign.”
States across America are struggling with logistical problems including expired doses, long lines, and crashed registration systems, as the federal government largely delegated planning to state and local authorities.
As for Florida’s most noteworthy rich New York transplant, president emeritus Donald Trump, he’s said he would take the vaccine once federal health officials recommended he receive it.