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Long Term Care Facility Vaccination Rollout Will Be “Logistic Nightmare”- Dr. Raul Pino

Dr. Raul Pino, the health officer for the Florida Department of Health in Orange County speaks to the media during a briefing on December 14th. Image: Orange TV

Orange County’s top health official says vaccinating long term care residents will be a “logistic nightmare.” Dr. Raul Pino, the health officer for the Florida Department of Health in Orange County, says his staff are ready to help deliver the COVID-19 vaccines if asked to by the state. 

“I want to ask for your patience and understanding, as we are going to engage in a logistic nightmare to try to deliver those vaccines to assisted living facilities, and other places that need it urgently,” said Pino during the County’s regular Monday afternoon pandemic briefing.

with over 9,000 residents and employees in long-term care facilities, vaccinating them all in four weeks will be a challenge. 

“And even when you have all the resources, the other challenge that you have is how you distribute the vaccine to all those places. Some places have four residents. Other places have 300 residents. So, the other logistic nightmare is getting consent.”

Transporting the Pfizer vaccine, keeping it cold and providing security in case of protests are also a concern. 

Pino said getting long-term care facility residents and staff vaccinated in four weeks will require working seven days a week doing more than 500 vaccinations a day. 

Vaccination goal for Orange County close to one million residents

Pino said at least 900,000 residents will need to get vaccinated. 

“I know that everything has been politicized, but it’s critically important to take this vaccine, because we need to achieve to be able to achieve immunity with the herd,” said Pino.

Herd immunity is when enough people in a population become immune to a disease- either by vaccination or infection- to make person-to-person spread unlikely. 

“With this vaccine we have to get to about 79% of any population vaccinated. And in our county, that’s close to a million people, close to 900,000 people. So those are significant numbers, and we are, it’s gonna take us a little bit to get to those levels, probably we will not be able to vaccinate that number of people until probably early in the summer.”

Pino said the fact that health care workers are the first to take the vaccine should give people confidence that the vaccine is safe.  

In the meantime, 20,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine are expected to be delivered to Advent Health Tuesday for front-line health care workers. 

Orange County has reported 64,147 cases and 680 deaths from COVID-19.



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About Matthew Peddie

Matt Peddie