California will not officially open COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to all adults until April 15.
But as vaccine supplies have increased recently – a trend state officials are optimistic will continue in the weeks to come – parts of California now have periodic excesses. And this leads the authorities to make the doses available to all adults, even those who are not eligible under the current rules.
This has happened this week in several locations, including Riverside County, Bakersfield, the Bay Area and even parts of Los Angeles. But these additional slots were filled quickly, leading to some being turned down.
Here is what we know:
Can anyone have a chance?
Vaccines remain difficult to obtain for some, even those aged 50 and over who are officially eligible. But in some parts of the state, access is open.
This was the case in Cal State Los Angeles. Eligible people did not claim thousands of immunization site appointments through the MyTurn registration system. As a result, vaccinators were allowed to vaccinate adults visiting the site without an appointment – including people who do not meet current eligibility requirements, said Brian Ferguson, spokesperson for the Office of Health Services. state emergency.
Anyone 18 and over will be allowed to line up for their photo at the Cal State LA site until Sunday night, Ferguson said.
“As long as the vaccines remain available, we will vaccinate until we are out,” he said.
Those hoping for a vaccine should note that, as a result of word of mouth, the site was quickly inundated with walk-in people. As of Thursday morning, so many hopes were aligned that the extra doses ran out and people were fired.
Does it affect those who have priority and a date?
Vaccines will continue to prioritize appointments made through the state’s My Turn system, which can only be taken by those aged 50 and over, those with underlying health conditions and those working in specific core areas, such as health, education, child care, emergency services, and food and agriculture.
People can sign up for an appointment on the My Turn website or by calling (833) 422-4255.
Where else in California has vaccine eligibility been facilitated?
Other counties have decided to move faster than the state advised to allow all adults and some adolescents to access the vaccine.
In Southern California, Kern, Riverside, and San Bernardino counties have made anyone aged 16 and over eligible to get a shot.
Orange County allows anyone 16 years of age and older living in four zip codes hit hard by the COVID-`19 pandemic – 92701 and 92703 in Santa Ana, 92805 in Anaheim and 92844 in Garden Grove – to be vaccinated.
In the Bay Area, Alameda County allows anyone 16 years of age and over living in a dozen hard-hit postcodes to get vaccinated, including in the neighborhoods of Oakland, Hayward, San Leandro and San Lorenzo unincorporated.
Elsewhere in California, a number of northern counties – such as Contra Costa, Butte, Shasta, and Nevada – are among those that have opened up vaccines to people 16 and older; most require beneficiaries to live or work in these counties. Yuba and Sutter counties have made COVID-19 vaccines available to anyone 18 years of age and older who lives or works there.
the UC Davis Health System in the Sacramento area is also vaccinating people 16 years and older.
All COVID-19 vaccines are free to anyone living in the United States, regardless of immigration or health insurance status.
Long Beach announced Thursday that it will begin immunizing all people and travel to the Long Beach Convention Center Monday through Saturday. See you online on April 15.
Why are the rules loosening?
Kern County officials attributed the policy change to increased supplies and slower appointments for vaccines.
Kern County resident Natalie Frieson, 24, said the expansion was a welcome change.
“It means we can get back to a normal society much sooner,” she said, “and we hope fewer vaccines expire.”
Appointments are available at the Kern County Fairgrounds Mass Vaccination site this week, officials said, and can be booked through the state. My Turn system.
“I’m very relieved,” Frieson added, “to know that our public health officials realized that we were able to expand eligibility before the state’s April 15 date when they would have could decide to wait for the extra week.
Officials at Riverside, one of California’s largest counties, attributed their expansion to increased supplies. Last week, the county administered its millionth dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“More vaccines are available now, and opening eligibility will further enable us to meet our goal of vaccinating the majority of our residents,” said Karen Spiegel, County 2 District Supervisor. “The vaccine works best when the majority of the population takes it.”
Will there be enough supply?
Officials are confident there will be. California’s planned full reopening in two months is underway.
“Looking forward to an abundance of doses from the federal government until the end of this month and into May,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said on Tuesday, “we can confidently say by June 15 that we can begin to open up as a business – as usual – subject to continued mask wear and continued vigilance. “
To date, providers across California have distributed nearly 20.9 million total doses of COVID-19 vaccine and 35.1% of residents have received at least one vaccine, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention .
About 18.8% of Californians are fully vaccinated, which means they have received either the Johnson & Johnson single injection vaccine or the required two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine.
Nationwide, 33.1% of Americans have received at least one dose and 19.4% are fully immunized, according to CDC data.
During the early phases of the vaccine’s deployment, California restricted access to vaccines to those considered most at risk of COVID-19, either because of their age, occupation, or sub-health conditions. underlying.
President Biden initially said states should make all adults eligible for COVID-19 vaccines by May 1. But he announced a more aggressive timeline – setting a deadline for April 19.