By Karli Barnett

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Some people in South Florida have been fortunate to be among the first to get their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine over the last few days.

Far too many others, though, have been dealing with long lines, being turned away, or unable to the appointment at all.

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Infectious disease expert Dr. Aileen Marty, who has been a leading voice on the virus since the beginning, said this vaccination frustration will eventually improve.

“Remember every single day we are getting better,” she said, referring to the vaccine rollout. “Jackson is getting better. Baptist is getting better and Mount Sinai.”

She also acknowledges this was never going to be an overnight process to get all willing seniors vaccinated.

“We truly, truly need over 75% coverage to really feel protected, and, mind you it would be better if we had 90% coverage,” she said.

That is why statements from the head of Jackson Health System saying the elderly population in Miami-Dade could be completely vaccinated in a matter of weeks is unlikely.

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“It’s very ambitious what he’s proposing. It’s not impossible, but it’s unlikely to be done at the time frame he’s talking about,” Marty said.

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A bit of good news is officials are already trying to make the appointment process more streamlined.

“What we’re working on is to make it a more coordinated in central [web]site, so people don’t have to hunt which hospital might have spots, or which location may or may not have spots,” she explains.

Dr. Marty understands some may be fearful, but assures people the vaccine is not going to run out on them.

“We already know we will be receiving a lot more vaccine in a short amount of time, and we expect to be vaccinating thousands and thousands of people per day within the next few weeks.”

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Dr. Marty said it is important we maintain all the public health measures, whether or not you receive the vaccine. Also, keep in mind, the vaccine is two parts in order to be effective.

Karli Barnett