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Tampa Greyhound Track vaccine site to resume offering first-dose shots

The site will have 3,000 shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine available each day for people needing an initial dose.
People enter a tent at the federally-run vaccination site at the Tampa Greyhound Track on April 5, the first day the vaccine eligibility age dropped to 16 and up.
People enter a tent at the federally-run vaccination site at the Tampa Greyhound Track on April 5, the first day the vaccine eligibility age dropped to 16 and up. [ MARTHA ASENCIO-RHINE | Times ]
Published Apr. 19
Updated Apr. 19

The federally supported COVID-19 vaccine site at the Tampa Greyhound Track will resume offering first-dose Pfizer-BioNtech shots Tuesday to people 16 and older, following a temporary break last week in offering first doses.

Last Tuesday, the site abruptly stopped offering doses of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended a pause for administering the drug. The federal government is looking into reports of rare but serious blood clots found in six women who received that vaccine.

The track, as well as three other federally supported vaccine sites throughout the state, had transitioned earlier this month to exclusively offering Johnson & Johnson to people looking for initial doses.

Audrey Clarke, a spokeswoman for the site, said it will have 3,000 first-dose Pfizer vaccines available a day, as well as 2,000 doses available for second shots. That’s the same amount as before the pause.

“Come on out. We’re open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.,” Clarke said Monday. No appointment is necessary to get the vaccine at that site.

Unlike the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the Pfizer vaccine is a two-dose regimen, with the second shot recommended for three weeks after the first one.

The federally supported vaccine sites are tentatively scheduled to shut down May 26.

The Tampa Greyhound Track is located at 755 E Waters Ave. The three other federal sites are in Jacksonville, Orlando and Miami.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease expert, said over the weekend that he expects the government to resume using Johnson & Johnson vaccines by Friday, although possibly with some restrictions or additional warnings.

It is not clear whether the Tampa Greyhound Track and other sites would switch back to offering Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines when that happens.

Related: Fauci expects J&J vaccine to resume after CDC meeting Friday

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