maría-elena-salinas María Elena Salinas received the Covid-19 vaccine in Miami, Florida.
Image via Instagram/mariaesalinas

“Keep going into every available website and call every available number… Tens of thousands have already been vaccinated so it’s out there,” Salinas said.

On Jan. 11, journalist María Elena Salinas shared on Instagram that she got the COVID-19 vaccine in Miami, Florida. The former Univision anchor and current CBS contributor said she got the Pfizer COVID vaccine through the Jackson Health Foundation. 

“Felt nothing but peace of mind knowing I’m on track to safety and freedom. Thanks to paramedic Chris Ackerman and @jacksonhealthfoundation for making it happen. #itdidnthurt. Me puse la vacuna contra el COVID esta mañana. No sentí nada más que alivio al saber que voy rumbo a estar protegida y vivir con más libertad.”

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Some of her followers on Instagram asked her how she was able to get vaccinated before others. One follower asked, “How did you get it? I have not been able to get an app for my parents.” Another said, “Did you do that (call every available number) or you just have ‘special connections’ like Gloria and Emilio Stefan?”

The Florida Health Department states that under Gov. Ron DeSantis’ executive order they are currently vaccinating long-term care facility residents and staff; persons 65 years of age and older; health care personnel with direct patient contact; and persons deemed to be extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 by hospital providers.

Salinas answered some of those valid questions regarding her ability to get the COVID vaccination. In response to someone saying that they have been unable to get their elderly parents vaccinated, Salinas responded by saying, “Keep going into every available website and call every available number to put them on a list. Tens of thousands have already been vaccinated so it’s out there.”

Others asked if she was 65 or older in order to qualify to get vaccinated. Salinas said, “Isn’t it bad manners to ask a woman her age 🙄…yes I qualify.” 

“This next phase reflects the urgency of the situation we face,” Alex M. Azar, the US secretary of Health and Human Services said, according to The New York Times. “Every vaccine dose that is sitting in a warehouse rather than going into an arm could mean one more life lost or one more hospital bed occupied.”

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President-elect Joe Biden has said his administration will work faster on getting the vaccine to more people. According to his transition team, a number of options have been discussed, and Biden directed the team to explore all possible avenues—particularly increasing federal leadership—to accelerate getting the US population vaccinated.