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COVID-19 vaccines: Florida the only state to not order doses for kids after FDA authorization

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Yahoo Finance health care correspondent Anjalee Khemlani joins the Live show to discuss Florida being the only state not to order Pfizer and Moderna's FDA approved COVID vaccines for children 5-years old and under.

Video Transcript

RACHELLE AKUFFO: Lots to watch in the health space, with FDA approval for COVID vaccines for children under five. And now the Florida Department of Health is ordering doses, a reversal from what Governor DeSantis originally said. Let's break all of this down with Yahoo Finance's Anjalee Khemlani. Anjalee, what do we need to know about these updates?

ANAJLEE KHEMLANI: Well, Rachelle, first of all, we definitely know that the good news is that the FDA did come down with that authorization this morning. And we're still waiting for the CDC to really OK those doses. But in the meantime, we've got word that 49 out of the 50 states had pre-ordered doses. And Florida remained the single state not to order any doses for that five and under group.

Now what has been seen as a reversal is that the government has specifically said the state government has specifically started to say that clinicians and other individuals who are eligible could order through the State Department, but the state itself was not putting in the order through the federal government. We heard from the surgeon general yesterday saying something similar.

And then today, a spokesperson for the governor did say, quote, "The state of Florida does not recommend nor distribute shots for babies. Any health care provider that wants the vaccines can obtain them. And any parent who wants it for their child can get it."

Now that is basically putting the burden on pediatricians, as well as pharmacies and hospitals. We know that CVS, Walgreens, and others that are partnered with the federal government to distribute those doses have been ready to do so in Florida, as well as the pediatricians and hospitals were ready to administer them. But it's unclear whether or not they knew that the burden was on them to do so. The surgeon general saying yesterday that there were no orders yet through the state portal. So as of today, they should be coming in. Back to you.

DAVE BRIGGS: All right, good news. Anjalee, thanks so much.