The Grocery store chain Publix said it would not be distributing COVID-19 vaccines for children under the age of five at any of its pharmacy locations.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, spokesperson Hannah Herring said Tuesday that Publix will not be explaining its decision at this time.
Some competitors, like Walmart and Kroger, will be offering the vaccine to children. But, Publix has decided that it will not follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendation to provide the vaccine for children under five years old.
Publix is a Florida-based company with stores in various other southern states. Most of its locations, however, are based in the Sunshine State.
Florida is reportedly the only state in America that isn’t ordering the COVID-19 vaccine for kids under five. State Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo said he does not recommend the shot for young children.
Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis said the state is “affirmatively against” vaccinating young children against the virus.
“There is not going to be any state programs that are going to be trying to get COVID jabs to infants, toddlers, and newborns,” the Desantis said in response to a question asked at a press conference. “That’s not something that we think is appropriate, and so that’s not where we are going to be utilizing our resources.”
Publix played a crucial role in Florida’s initial rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine, helping DeSantis and his administration quickly vaccinate seniors across the state.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, by April 2021, Publix was Florida’s largest vaccine supplier, responsible for distributing more than one-quarter of the state’s vaccines.
Social media erupted with praise regarding the decision by Publix. Many called it “very good,” while others said the grocery chain had now won their business.