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Next step in Lake County vaccinations: After-school events at county high schools

AFP via Getty Images
A healthcare worker fills a syringe from a vial with a dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine against the COVID-19 coronavirus as South Africa proceeds with its inoculation campaign at the Klerksdorp Hospital on February 18, 2021. (Photo by Phill Magakoe / AFP) (Photo by PHILL MAGAKOE/AFP via Getty Images)

The Lake County Health Department is offering the Pfizer vaccine to students 16 and older -- along with anyone else who is eligible -- at Eustis High from 3 to 6 Monday afternoon.

It is the next step in the county effort now that about 80 percent of residents 65 and older have been vaccinated.

Administrator Aaron Kissler says the department will keep working at it but some senior citizens won't want the vaccine. Getting the wider community immunized actually protects those vaccine-hesitant seniors.

"We can cocoon, put a protective cocoon around some of those folks," he said.

After-school vaccinations are also planned at other high schools: South Lake and Leesburg on Tuesday, Lake Minneola on Wednesday, and Tavares on Thursday.

Students under 18 must have a parent or guardian with them. But other residents are welcome, too.

Kissler sees a chance to bring the vaccine to those communities at a time that's convenient for working people.

"It's a good opportunity, you know, we'll get some folks that are younger, some people that are middle and some people that are older," Kissler said. "And just really trying to get that community involvement in getting the whole community vaccinated."

District works to make vaccine available

Lake County Schools has jumped at the opportunity to get its people vaccinated.

Superintendent Diane Kornegay says the district has partnered with the Department of Health on this.

"With every group that now is eligible," she said, "the Health Department has been ready along with the district to immediately move and provide those vaccinations for those age groups, starting with our 65 and older and now moving to our 16 and older."

Last week, employees 50 and older received their second shot. And those 40 and up were getting their first, and this week high school students 16 and older can receive the Pfizer vaccine after school.


Joe Byrnes came to Central Florida Public Media from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.