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Metropolitan Ministries hosts state-run, one-day vaccination clinic for local community members

Janssen Vaccine
Posted at 4:30 PM, Mar 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-26 18:13:56-04

TAMPA, Fla. —  — As the state works to broaden eligibility for COVID-19 vaccinations, they’re also identifying additional locations for mobile sites, in hopes of reaching people in under-served communities.

Friday, the state identified three mobile sites to offer 200 Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccines to those in underserved communities.

The sites were at HCC Southshore in Ruskin, Iglesia Communidad de Fe in Tampa, and Metropolitan Ministries in Tampa.

Metropolitan Ministries got the call just a few days ago, asking if they would be willing to host a one-day clinic. They jumped at the opportunity as part of their effort to provide for people in the community who have fallen on hard times.

“We lost our house, and when we lost our house we stayed in our vehicle for a while until I finally got called by Metropolitan Ministries,” said Elvis Medina, a resident at Metropolitan Ministries.

Elvis Medina is a single father to two girls. He’s a former private investigator and he says that right now, he’s working on education to head into a new profession to be able to be self-sufficient.

Metropolitan Ministries is helping him with that, and today, the place that provides so much stepped up to the task to provide even more; COVID-19 vaccines.

“I don’t want to come in contact with someone that might be asymptomatic, or has COVID, and then I bring it home to my daughters. Since they’re not eligible for getting vaccines, I’m gonna do whatever I can to protect them,” said Medina.

This was all part of the state’s mobile one-day vaccination clinics, partnering with local organizations that community members trust.

“This area is phenomenal for the population that we’re looking for. We want to be able to service the homeless population, those that may have difficulty getting out to other sites,” said Michael Yanni, Assoc. Director of Health and Wellness Services at Metropolitan Ministries.

The state brings in 200 of the single-dose Johnson and Johnson vaccines so the groups of people they’re reaching don’t have to come back for round two.

And Metropolitan Ministries offered knowledge beforehand, ensuring people can make an educated decision when it comes to their health.

“We want individuals to make the choice on their own, but we want it to be based on correct information, and not from misinformation they may have heard,” said Yanni.

The state is continuing to identify new mobile site locations, and they’ve got a few coming up this weekend:

  • Saturday, March 27 —
    • Feeding Tampa Bay at Hillsborough Community College4001 W. Tampa Bay Blvd., Tampa, FL 336147 a.m. – 3 p.m.
    • Feeding Tampa Bay at Trinity Café2202 E. Busch Blvd., Tampa, FL 336126:30 a.m. – 3 p.m.
    • Iglesia Communidad de Fe8414 Wilsky Blvd., Tampa, FL 336159 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, March 28 —
    • Keeney United Methodist Church7736 Destin Dr., Tampa, FL 336198 a.m. – 6 p.m.
    • Iglesia Communidad de Fe8414 Wilsky Blvd., Tampa, FL 336159 a.m. – 5 p.m.

According to the Florida Department of Emergency Management, appointments are not necessary and each site will offer the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. Each event can administer up to 200 vaccines per day. All state-supported vaccination events will vaccinate all eligible individuals per the Governor’s current Executive Order.