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Sarasota County is offering in-home vaccinations to residents

A health worker administers a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine during a vaccination clinic in Chester, Pa., on Dec. 15, 2021.
Matt Rourke
/
AP
A health worker administers a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine during a vaccination clinic in Chester, Pa., on Dec. 15, 2021.

The service is available for anyone unable to get to a clinic or other location on their own.

As COVID-19 and other infectious diseases continue to spread throughout the community, Sarasota County is making it easier for some residents to get vaccinated. Health workers will administer shots to people in their homes.

The Department of Health in Sarasota launched the in-home vaccination service in coordination with Sarasota County Health and Human Services.

The service is available for anyone unable to get to a clinic or other location on their own. This may include people with disabilities, people with chronic health conditions, children and seniors.

Older adults are more likely to go to the hospital for some infectious diseases, including pneumonia, which is a leading cause of death for this age group, according to Aleksandra Fitzgibbons, DOH Sarasota Immunizations Program manager.

Shots to protect against pneumonia are available along with flu and COVID-19 vaccines.

The county offers the following as examples of circumstances where someone would be able to get in-home vaccinations:

  • Individuals of any age who are physically or mentally unable to leave the house.
  • Homebound individuals receiving home health services.
  • Individuals aged 65 and older who are unable to drive or to leave the house without proper transportation.
  • Situations other than those described in the eligibility criteria will be evaluated by the nurse through a phone interview.

Officials note these are not the only circumstances and that anyone unsure if they qualify should contact the health department. Caregivers of those receiving in-home visits can also get vaccinated at the same time.

The service is available on Wednesdays and Thursdays. People can call (941) 861-2784 to schedule appointments Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m..

The COVID-19 shots are free for everyone, but people may have to pay for the other vaccines.

According to the health department, the cost of flu and pneumonia vaccines are covered for individuals with the following health insurance companies: Traditional Medicare (A & B), Blue Cross Blue Shield (Florida Blue except My Blue), Aetna and Aetna Medicare Advantage. Co-payments may apply.

For uninsured individuals, the costs are as follows, flu vaccine (regular dose) $20, flu high dose $79.34, flu (for individuals allergic to egg products) $79.34 and pneumonia vaccines are $20.

I cover health care for WUSF and the statewide journalism collaborative Health News Florida. I’m passionate about highlighting community efforts to improve the quality of care in our state and make it more accessible to all Floridians. I’m also committed to holding those in power accountable when they fail to prioritize the health needs of the people they serve.
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