Health Department Incompetence + How did the Developer's cronies cut the line?

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  #1  
Old 01-10-2021, 09:24 AM
Advogado Advogado is offline
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Default Health Department Incompetence + How did the Developer's cronies cut the line?

The following is a letter that I emailed to Governor DeSantis and to Sumter County Health Department Administrator Zelnick on January 7. After I wrote that letter, the Sumter County Health Department gave us a fourth debacle as it required tens of thousands of residents to again waste time fruitlessly vying for a tiny number of inoculations on January 10 and 11--using a computer program designed for selling tickets to rock concerts and other events. There are commercially available software programs (designed by experts at Microsoft, Sales Force, and other companies) for the rational and efficient distribution of the Covid 19 vaccine. Why in the world doesn't our Health Department use one??????????? 15 Recently Launched COVID-19 Vaccine Management Solutions to Know


Re: The necessity of a comprehensive plan for distribution and administration of the Covid-19 vaccine

Dear Governor DeSantis and Sumter County Health Department Administrator Zelnick:

As important as is the allocation of vaccine to various Florida counties is the necessity of a plan to EFFICENTLY get the vaccine into the arms of residents. It would seem that the Florida Department of Health headquarters should formulate such a plan so that each of its county health departments does not have to reinvent the wheel. Such a plan should include an on-line system of registration for vaccination, using appropriate software.

We have had three initial debacles in Sumter County in distributing the vaccine.
1. The first debacle was political insiders connected to the Developer of The Villages cutting the vaccination line—resulting in their getting vaccinated ahead of more-deserving residents, such as health-care workers.
2. The second debacle was the County Health Department's utilizing a single phone line, instead of the internet, for 140,000 people to register for a limited number of vaccinations-- resulting in chaos.
3. The third debacle was the County Health Department's finally utilizing the internet for vaccination registration-- but including no software to ensure that the limited supply got to the most-vulnerable people first-- instead utilizing a first-registered/first-vaccinated system.

I hope that the state Department of Health headquarters will soon formulate a comprehensive plan for mass vaccinations (when adequate vaccine becomes available). That plan should include answers to questions such as the following:
>Exactly who should register, as the vaccine arrives in phases, and what relevant information should they provide (e.g., date of birth, underlying medical problems)?
>Is there a phone number for those without internet access to call so that someone at their county health department can register them on its website?
>How will the registrants be prioritized for receipt of the vaccine? I would suggest by age (after health-care workers and nursing-home and hospital patients)-- with the oldest (highest risk of death) being first, and then working down through age groups. But there may be a better system. Certainly, utilizing a first-registered/first-vaccinated makes no sense in terms of saving lives.
>How will registrants be notified of the time and place of their first AND second vaccination?
>What steps are being taken so that there will be no long lines?
>What is the procedure at the vaccination center(s) for both the administration of the vaccine and watching for, and treating, possible adverse reactions?
>Will some vaccines be given to cancer centers for vaccination of cancer patients? To medical practices for vaccination of high-risk patients? To CVS and Walgreens and how will they prevent long lines and vaccinate persons in order of priority?
>When do you anticipate that more vaccine will be available and in what quantities?

I have neither the expertise nor the data to formulate such a comprehensive vaccination plan, but hopefully the Florida Department of Health does and will formulate such a plan in the near future.

I am copying our Sumter County Commissioners on this email. I understand that they do not control the local County Health Department, but they do provide funding for it. Thus, they are in a position to encourage it to do better in the future and to demand an explanation as to why the cronies of the Villages Developer were permitted to cut the vaccination line and as to whether anyone else was also permitted to do so.

Sincerely,

Scott T. Fenstermaker

Last edited by Advogado; 01-10-2021 at 09:30 AM.
  #2  
Old 01-10-2021, 09:34 AM
ldj1938 ldj1938 is offline
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Default About time

Your message is right on the button. I have no idea what resources Sumter health has, but they are in way over their heads now. Too bad the national guard can’t jump in to help. Somebody! Anybody!
  #3  
Old 01-10-2021, 10:26 AM
Aloha1 Aloha1 is offline
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Short answer: Give it all to Publix. They can do it far better than the bureaucratic Health Departments.
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  #4  
Old 01-10-2021, 10:40 AM
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Do not expect to get an answer from Desantis or even from his staff.

First elected administration I have ever communicated with that does not reply to ANY correspondence....none. From my experience writing to him or his "office" several times.

Demonstrates where their priority is and lacking knowledge how to serve those who put them there.
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  #5  
Old 01-10-2021, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Advogado View Post
The following is a letter that I emailed to Governor DeSantis and to Sumter County Health Department Administrator Zelnick on January 7. After I wrote that letter, the Sumter County Health Department gave us a fourth debacle as it required tens of thousands of residents to again waste time fruitlessly vying for a tiny number of inoculations on January 10 and 11--using a computer program designed for selling tickets to rock concerts and other events. There are commercially available software programs (designed by experts at Microsoft, Sales Force, and other companies) for the rational and efficient distribution of the Covid 19 vaccine. Why in the world doesn't our Health Department use one??????????? 15 Recently Launched COVID-19 Vaccine Management Solutions to Know


Re: The necessity of a comprehensive plan for distribution and administration of the Covid-19 vaccine

Dear Governor DeSantis and Sumter County Health Department Administrator Zelnick:

As important as is the allocation of vaccine to various Florida counties is the necessity of a plan to EFFICENTLY get the vaccine into the arms of residents. It would seem that the Florida Department of Health headquarters should formulate such a plan so that each of its county health departments does not have to reinvent the wheel. Such a plan should include an on-line system of registration for vaccination, using appropriate software.

We have had three initial debacles in Sumter County in distributing the vaccine.
1. The first debacle was political insiders connected to the Developer of The Villages cutting the vaccination line—resulting in their getting vaccinated ahead of more-deserving residents, such as health-care workers.
2. The second debacle was the County Health Department's utilizing a single phone line, instead of the internet, for 140,000 people to register for a limited number of vaccinations-- resulting in chaos.
3. The third debacle was the County Health Department's finally utilizing the internet for vaccination registration-- but including no software to ensure that the limited supply got to the most-vulnerable people first-- instead utilizing a first-registered/first-vaccinated system.

I hope that the state Department of Health headquarters will soon formulate a comprehensive plan for mass vaccinations (when adequate vaccine becomes available). That plan should include answers to questions such as the following:
>Exactly who should register, as the vaccine arrives in phases, and what relevant information should they provide (e.g., date of birth, underlying medical problems)?
>Is there a phone number for those without internet access to call so that someone at their county health department can register them on its website?
>How will the registrants be prioritized for receipt of the vaccine? I would suggest by age (after health-care workers and nursing-home and hospital patients)-- with the oldest (highest risk of death) being first, and then working down through age groups. But there may be a better system. Certainly, utilizing a first-registered/first-vaccinated makes no sense in terms of saving lives.
>How will registrants be notified of the time and place of their first AND second vaccination?
>What steps are being taken so that there will be no long lines?
>What is the procedure at the vaccination center(s) for both the administration of the vaccine and watching for, and treating, possible adverse reactions?
>Will some vaccines be given to cancer centers for vaccination of cancer patients? To medical practices for vaccination of high-risk patients? To CVS and Walgreens and how will they prevent long lines and vaccinate persons in order of priority?
>When do you anticipate that more vaccine will be available and in what quantities?

I have neither the expertise nor the data to formulate such a comprehensive vaccination plan, but hopefully the Florida Department of Health does and will formulate such a plan in the near future.

I am copying our Sumter County Commissioners on this email. I understand that they do not control the local County Health Department, but they do provide funding for it. Thus, they are in a position to encourage it to do better in the future and to demand an explanation as to why the cronies of the Villages Developer were permitted to cut the vaccination line and as to whether anyone else was also permitted to do so.

Sincerely,

Scott T. Fenstermaker
I understand your frustration and in principle a standardized computer registration system seems ideal. But developing a computer system or even modifying an existing one to handle that volume of traffic is a massive undertaking. The people skills and hardware availability differ greatly between counties and states. The Social Security System is still using COBOL language computer systems developed decades ago. Attempts to develop new systems have been plagued with problems. It's a huge undertaking to get everyone vaccinated and health departments are doing the best they can trying different distribution approaches. Unfortunately we have become addicted to instant gratification and that is not possible here.
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Last edited by John41; 01-10-2021 at 10:51 AM.
  #6  
Old 01-10-2021, 10:44 AM
blueash blueash is offline
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The Sumter Co Health Dept is tiny and fights to get nickels and dimes from the state. Of course we could have spent money via taxes to better fund the Dept in case there was an emergency, but we all know that most of what the Dept does is beneficial to the less affluent in our community while those better off will rarely need their services.

Until there is a disaster when everybody demands they have everything now, up to date to work on their latest iphone, with services available with no waiting and by golf cart if not closer. The Health Dept people have been working their butts off for months on this pandemic, but blast away at them. They're too damn busy to be reading your criticism, or likely your sent letter which should go in the circular file and not waste time being replied to. Yes, I know Dr. Zelnick who you simply call Zelnick. And I know a lot of the nurses and assistants who make up our county's small struggling underfunded and under appreciated Health Dept.
How about you not only write the County Commissioners and demand a funding increase, but as well as write your Florida legislators demanding the same thing.

As to the software issue and your insistence it should screen for "most vulnerable" people. Talk to your governor, don't blame the local health dept. The vaccines allocated to the general public via that sign up were after the higher risk groups had been allocated vaccine and now all persons 65 and older without regard to any other factors are next per DeSantis and contrary to what the CDC had proposed.

Quote:
DeSantis signed an executive order mandating that people 65 and older be placed in Florida’s first vaccine priority group.

Last edited by blueash; 01-10-2021 at 11:13 AM.
  #7  
Old 01-10-2021, 10:51 AM
Lottoguy Lottoguy is offline
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It's too bad the people who said "it's just the flu" are not at the end of the line.
  #8  
Old 01-10-2021, 11:19 AM
johnsi911 johnsi911 is offline
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The Good News newspaper (i.e. Daily Sun) headline: "Large-Scale Vaccine Effort Starts Tuesday in Sumter". Then they publish a website link for a pitiful 200 or so tickets for Monday on Eventbrite which is a joke when trying to get a ticket. So where's this "Large Scale Vaccine Effort" and how do we sign up?

I'm a DeSantis fan but I wish he would have done it as a step function by age. Start with 75 and older as recommended by the CDC and then 65 and older. I'm obviously biased because I'm 77 and am an asthmatic. I suspect my comment might tick off 50% of the 80,000 that are 65 and older in Sumter County.

Last edited by johnsi911; 01-10-2021 at 11:23 AM. Reason: Grammar plus additional content
  #9  
Old 01-10-2021, 11:21 AM
Stu from NYC Stu from NYC is online now
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Amazing how inefficient govt is when they had so much time to come up with a plan.
  #10  
Old 01-10-2021, 11:24 AM
Advogado Advogado is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueash View Post
The Sumter Co Health Dept is tiny and fights to get nickels and dimes from the state. Of course we could have spent money via taxes to better fund the Dept in case there was an emergency, but we all know that most of what the Dept does is beneficial to the less affluent in our community while those better off will rarely need their services.

Until there is a disaster when everybody demands they have everything now, up to date to work on their latest iphone, with services available with no waiting and by golf cart if not closer. The Health Dept people have been working their butts off for months on this pandemic, but blast away at them. They're too damn busy to be reading your criticism, or likely your sent letter which should go in the circular file and not waste time being replied to. Yes, I know Dr. Zelnick who you simply call Zelnick. And I know a lot of the nurses and assistants who make up our county's small struggling underfunded and under appreciated Health Dept.
How about you not only write the County Commissioners and demand a funding increase, but as well as write your Florida legislators demanding the same thing.

As to the software issue and your insistence it should screen for "most vulnerable" people. Talk to your governor, don't blame the local health dept. The vaccines allocated to the general public via that sign up were after the higher risk groups had been allocated vaccine and now all persons 65 and older without regard to any other factors are next per DeSantis and contrary to what the CDC had proposed.
Since you know Dr. Zelnick, perhaps you could ask him to explain why he permitted the Developer's cronies to hop to the front of the vaccination line.
  #11  
Old 01-10-2021, 11:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Advogado View Post
Since you know Dr. Zelnick, perhaps you could ask him to explain why he permitted the Developer's cronies to hop to the front of the vaccination line.
You mean they weren't picked randomly?
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  #12  
Old 01-10-2021, 11:42 AM
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And so it goes, everyone has a solution, everyone has an opinion and of course what would a post or letter be without taking a shot at the Developer (those 5 vaccines would have tripped the balance wouldn't it). Reaction without data is the way of the TV and that is frustrating for many of us.
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  #13  
Old 01-10-2021, 12:07 PM
Advogado Advogado is offline
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Originally Posted by JoMar View Post
And so it goes, everyone has a solution, everyone has an opinion and of course what would a post or letter be without taking a shot at the Developer (those 5 vaccines would have tripped the balance wouldn't it). Reaction without data is the way of the TV and that is frustrating for many of us.
Are you seriously defending letting the Developer's cronies skip the line instead of giving the vaccine to, for example, health-care workers or cancer patients?
  #14  
Old 01-10-2021, 12:09 PM
Advogado Advogado is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsi911 View Post
The Good News newspaper (i.e. Daily Sun) headline: "Large-Scale Vaccine Effort Starts Tuesday in Sumter". Then they publish a website link for a pitiful 200 or so tickets for Monday on Eventbrite which is a joke when trying to get a ticket. So where's this "Large Scale Vaccine Effort" and how do we sign up?

I'm a DeSantis fan but I wish he would have done it as a step function by age. Start with 75 and older as recommended by the CDC and then 65 and older. I'm obviously biased because I'm 77 and am an asthmatic. I suspect my comment might tick off 50% of the 80,000 that are 65 and older in Sumter County.
I voted for DeSantis, but he has been an absolute disaster in his approach to COVID-19, including opposing mandatory masking.
  #15  
Old 01-10-2021, 12:10 PM
davem4616 davem4616 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stu from NYC View Post
Amazing how inefficient govt is when they had so much time to come up with a plan.
Well in reality they've been very busy pointing fingers at the other guy, raising money to get reelected, getting visibility on television and going on 'fact finding' missions around the world Stu....you put all that together and there really isn't much time to do much of anything else

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