Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo are advising against the latest round of COVID-19 booster shots for those under 65. The latest guidance issued by the Florida Department of Health on Wednesday includes a warning about the vaccine’s adverse effects, linking it to cardiovascular conditions and other health risks.

In the latest guidance from the Florida Department of Health, Governor Ron DeSantis and Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo advised against the new mRNA COVID shots.
The CDC has approved the newest mRNA booster shots from Moderna and Pfizer for children six months and older. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

On Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) approved the newest mRNA booster shots from Moderna and Pfizer for everyone six months and older if they have not received one in the last two months. This updated recommendation came after the Food and Drug Administration approved the new shots on Monday as a precautionary measure against XBB.1.5, a subvariant of the Omicron strain. The FDA findings also determined that “individuals 6 months through 4 years of age who have previously been vaccinated against COVID-19 are eligible to receive one or two doses of an updated mRNA COVID-19 vaccine,” with unvaccinated babies and toddlers eligible for three jabs in total.

Citing the FDA’s determination that the boosters “met the agency’s rigorous scientific standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality,” the CDC approved the shots for release by week’s end. However, the Florida Department of Health stressed that the government agencies did not provide key clinical data proving the efficacy of the boosters.

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“While the initial mRNA COVID-19 vaccines were authorized by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) utilizing human clinical trial data, the most recent booster approval was granted in the absence of any meaningful booster-specific clinical trial data performed in humans,” the Department wrote. “In both cases the federal government has failed to provide sufficient data to support the safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccines. Health care providers are expected to include the information in this guidance in discussions with patients regarding the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines.”

Based on these factors, as well as the levels of widespread natural immunity among the general population, the Florida Department of Health recommends against vaccines for anyone under 65. Those 65 and older are encouraged to consult their healthcare providers.

The Florida guidance also includes a warning about the known risks associated with the experimental mRNA treatments, including “a risk of subclinical and clinical myocarditis and other cardiovascular conditions among otherwise healthy individuals.” It also made note of the “unknown risk of potential adverse impacts with each additional dose of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccine; currently individuals may have received five to seven doses (and counting) of this vaccine over a 3-year period.”





Florida Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo doubled down on this recommendation during a virtual panel hosted by Governor DeSantis on Wednesday. “With virtually every walking human being having some degree of immunity and the questions we have about safety and about effectiveness — especially about safety — my judgment is that it’s not a good decision for young people and for people who are not at high risk at this point in the pandemic,” Ladapo said. He echoed this sentiment on social media as well, writing that the CDC and FDA are pushing the shots on only “blind faith” as the Biden administration tries to “control your behavior.”

Governor Ron DeSantis, a longtime critic of vaccine mandates and COVID lockdowns, defended Ladapo’s decision and refused to “let the FDA and CDC use Floridians as guinea pigs for mRNA jabs.”

Despite statements to the contrary by government departments and elected officials (including President Joe Biden), even the CDC has acknowledged that COVID vaccines do not prevent the contracting or transmitting of the virus. At best, keeping up to date on vaccines can help to mitigate the severity of symptoms.

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