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Gov. Ron DeSantis says Publix to begin offering COVID-19 vaccine in panhandle

Publix partnership with Florida expands into Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Escambia
Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks about COVID-19 vaccine at Publix in Niceville, Jan. 12, 2021
Posted at 11:20 AM, Jan 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-12 14:36:09-05

NICEVILLE, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis said the state's partnership with Publix in distributing the COVID-19 vaccine is expanding into the panhandle.

DeSantis said Tuesday that Publix supermarkets in Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Escambia counties will begin taking reservations Wednesday and start giving out shots Thursday.

Not all area Publix stores will offer the vaccine, DeSantis said.


The governor spoke hours earlier in the retirement community of The Villages, where he said about 350,000 Florida seniors have already gotten the vaccine.

DeSantis reemphasized the importance of making sure that residents 65 and older are the first members of the general public to receive the vaccine.

"Publix was ready to go from the very beginning, and I think this is going to be really important as we continue our mission to put seniors first," DeSantis said.

The governor spoke at another Publix in Panama City Beach later in the afternoon.