Governor DeSantis Announces 1,000,000 COVID-19 Home Test Kids And To Focus On Seniors
Seniors First. Sensible Public Health. Kings Point Said To Get COVID-19 At-Home Test Kits.
West Palm Beach, FL – Boca Post (BocaPost.com) — Governor Ron DeSantis held a press conference today at Rehab Center of The Palm Beaches in West Palm Beach this morning to announce an initiative related to at home testing prioritizing Florida’s senior population.
The press conference held this morning at Rehabilitation Center of the Palm Beaches had presentations by Governor Ron DeSantis, Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo, FDEM Director Kevin Guthrie, and AHCA Secretary Simone Marstiller.
DeSantis announced that around his office’s ‘Seniors First’ approach in fighting COVID-19, he has ordered and will be delivering up to 1,000,000 at-home COVID-19 tests first to nursing homes, long term care facilities, and then senior heavy communities so Florida can protect it’s most vulnerable people. DeSantis says the kits will be sent to communities like Kings Point, which was the first senior community COVID-19 vaccination site in the state.
DeSantis’ office is has drawn a line in the sand stating that testing some people equates to ‘high value testing’ and other people as ‘low value testing’. DeSantis said “If you are young and healthy, you don’t need to be going out and getting tested every day”. With regards to the Florida workforce, DeSantis says that forcing someone to be tested before going to work is not high value testing. As previously echoed, DeSantis says Omicron is proving to be much more contagious but less lethal than previous COVID-19 variants.
“I don’t know if there is any prospect of the federal government following through on what it said it was going to do” DeSantis says in reference to the Biden Administration’s promise to deliver millions of home test kits.
DeSantis said that Florida is sourcing another 30k doses of the Monoclonal treatment from Glaxos Smith Klein but that HHS has put a hold on that. He said that the Monoclonal treatment footprint in Florida will increase as the availability of the doses increases. He added that the federal government may be treating Florida differently than other states in saying “Clearly, there’s been a different approach based on what state is asking for it, I think that is very unfortunate.”
Florida’s legislative budget committee has set aside $1B in order to budget for future waves such as the current Omicron variant.
Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo added that Florida implements a “sensible public health” which is contrary to the “insensible, wasteful, harmful, ridiculous policies seen at the federal level”. As part of the sensible public health policy, Florida will be sending tests to the high risk population first where they can be most effective.
Ladapo added that “testing people for respiratory virus when they have no symptoms at a massive scale is abnormal”. He says that there is much work to do in “unwinding the thinking that the national leadership has managed to unfortunately infuse many Americans with”. Ladapo added that the federal policy is ineffective and described it as “if your healthy you still need to go get tested for something to determine if your sick”.
AHCA Secretary Simone Marstiller added that while Florida has over 700 nursing homes and 3,000 assisted living facilities, the state led the nation in vaccinating seniors, staff, and residents in those types of facilities as well as providing access to vaccines and Monoclonal treatments. Marstiller said that there is an “entire structure that happens behind the scenes to make sure these individuals get the resources and information they need”.