Lee County lawmakers asking Governor to tour vaccine site, and then send more doses

Posted at 6:29 PM, Feb 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-04 18:29:34-05

LEE COUNTY — Lawmakers from Lee County are asking the Governor to come tour the county’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution site.

Commissioner Kevin Ruane said he’s convinced if Governor DeSantis sees how efficiently they’re vaccinating people, he’ll give them more doses.

Ruane said more than 2,000 people were vaccinated at the site near Southwest Florida International Airport Thursday, but he said, that’s not nearly enough. He wants to be doing up to 10,000 doses a day, but for that to happen, the Governor would have to send more vaccines.

Ruane said, the vaccine site can get people in and out in under 30 minutes.

"What I’d like the Governor to do is come down here and look at our facility. Not one person has said it isn’t a great experience," said Ruane.

The people we were able to speak to at the site Thursday seemed to agree.

"I thought it was very well-organized, and you get good direction. People help you and tell you which way to go, and no problem," said Janet Snook, who was receiving her second vaccine dose.

Ruane sent a letter to the Governor, along with every state legislator from Lee County. They’re asking for more doses, because recently, Ruane said the county’s supply has dropped.

"I think it’s really a result of more people doing them, Publix and whatever, our doses have decreased," said Ruane.

While Ruane thinks people should have options on where they get vaccinated, he thinks the county’s site is by far the most efficient. The patients seem to agree with that as well.

"Our appointment was at 3 o’clock, and I’m looking a the clock behind me. It’s only 3:01 and we’re going to be leaving in just a minute. So there’s no wait," said Pat Snook, who also received his second vaccine dose.

Ruane said, he doesn’t want to take vaccines away from other counties, but he does think efficiency like that should be rewarded if the goal is to get as many people vaccinated as possible.

"We’re in third place. Hillsborough and Orange is in front of us. That’s it. If we’re trying to create an immunity, reward people that have done the most," said Ruane.

We did reach out to the Governor’s office to see if they had a response to the letter, but we haven’t heard back. Ruane said, if the site was operating at what he believes is its capacity, we could have the entire county vaccinated in less than two months.