Crist Unveils “Successful Shots” Plan to Improve FL Vax Rollout

Urges a Fast Pass Line for Priority Groups

St. Petersburg, FL – Today, U.S. Representative Charlie Crist (D-FL) unveiled “Successful Shots,” a five-point plan to improve Florida’s vaccine rollout.  The plan would address site underutilization by giving all Floridians the chance to wait in the general line for a vaccine, while creating a Fast Pass line so seniors and vulnerable groups get priority access.  In addition, the Successful Shots plan calls for expanded hours, eliminating the Governor’s meaningless doctor’s note, and prioritizing teachers and other critical workers.  Finally, the plan would prevent further vaccine distribution abuse by Governor DeSantis by reserving pop-up sites for underserved communities only.

“The COVID vaccines are the miracle we’ve been praying for to help turn the tide against the pandemic – saving lives and getting us back to normal.  States should be prioritizing seniors and the most vulnerable, while doing everything they can to get shots into as many arms as quickly as possible.  Instead, Floridians are seeing reports of empty and underused vaccine sites, a meaningless doctor’s note requirement, and Governor DeSantis’ Donor First pop-up scandal, and they are outraged!  I don’t blame them!

“I have some ideas on how the Governor can reverse his vaccine missteps and prioritize lives, fairness, equity, and speed.  We start with inspiration from the Happiest Place on Earth.  Floridians know how the Fast Pass line at Disney World works, giving priority access while keeping the line moving for everyone else.  Under my Successful Shots plan, seniors and vulnerable groups get to use the Fast Pass line, while everyone else who wants to wait for unused shots or underutilized sites can do so.  No waiting for seniors, keep the line moving for everyone else.  Simple!  More shots in more arms helps everyone.

“At the same time, the state needs to be deliberate to reverse the racial, ethnic, and wealth vaccine gaps caused by the Governor’s policies.  Reserve pop-up sites for underserved communities only – bonus points if it’s near a bus stop!  The state also needs to expand hours so essential workers in the 2nd and 3rd shift can have their shot at the vaccine.  Additionally, ditch the doctor’s note.  It has no meaning, but more importantly, not everyone has a doctor.  I’m thinking about the 800,000 working Floridians who don’t have coverage and a doctor to sign the Governor’s note because he failed to expand Medicaid.

“Finally, Successful Shots prioritizes the teachers, childcare workers, and farmworkers we all rely on.  So many parents in our state know that if a bunch of teachers or child care workers get COVID, they’re staying home with the children that week.  We learned in the beginning of the pandemic that if there is an outbreak in the farm-to-table pipeline, there will be food shortages.  None of that is normal.  That’s why we’ve got to be open and safe.

“I have said from the beginning of this pandemic that if you are honest and transparent with people about your plan, they will be much more patient and understanding – and most importantly, people will feel like they are being treated fairly by their government.  That’s what has been missing.  We are in a race right now against the coronavirus and its variants.  I’m optimistic, but the current European surge tells us that a successful outcome is not foregone conclusion.  We have got to get this right.  And the sooner we get this right, the sooner we can get back to normal.  Successful Shots is a commonsense, five-point plan to get us there, together.”

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