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‘This is untrue’: Sacramento County clears up teacher COVID-19 vaccination confusion – KCRA Sacramento

‘This is untrue’: Sacramento County clears up teacher COVID-19 vaccination confusion

Public health explains educators not yet eligible for vaccination



GULSTAN: WHEN IT COMES TO GETTING COVID-19 SHOT INTO ARMS, CALIFORNIA AND OTHER STATES HAVE GONE TO A SLOW START. EARLIER THIS MONTH, GOVERNOR NEWSOM ANNOUNCED PLANS TO OPEN LARGE-SCALE VACCINATION SITES ACROSS THE STATE, AND SPECIFICALLY MENTIONED CAL EXPO IS ONE OF THE PLACES THAT WILL SPEED UP THE PROCESS OF GETTING PEOPLE PROTECTED FROM THE VIRUS. LET’S CHECK IN WITH BRIAN HEAP, WHO HAS BEEN LOOKING INTO HOW THESE SITES ARE DOING. THE NUMBERS SHOW CAL EXPO HAS LAGGED BEHIND SOME OTHER SITES, RIGHT? DR. BLISS: IF YOU LOOK — BRIAN: IF YOU LOOK AT THE RAW NUMBERS, YES. VACCINATION SUPERSIZE, WE PROBABLY HAVE IMAGES OF CARS LINED UP FOR DAYS. MOST OF THE SITES ARE RUNNING AT A HIGH VOLUME BUT NOT CAL EXPO. IT’S THE STATE’S LARGEST VACCINATION SITE NORTH OF LOS ANGELES. BUT BEFORE THIS WEEK, CAL EXPO HAD GIVEN OUT FEWER THAN 3200 SHOTS TOTAL AND NONE FOR SENIORS 65 AND U SINCE MONDAY, IT HAS DOUBLED THAT OUTPUT AND IS UP TO 700 VACCINATIONS PER DAY. HOW TO THOSE NUMBERS COMPARED TO CALIFORNIA’S OTHER VACCINATION SUPERSIZE — SUPER SITES, IN LOS ANGELES, ORANGE AND SAN DIEGO COUNTIES? LET’S START WITH DODGER STADIUM IN L.A. THAT SUPER SITE OPENED TWO WEEKS AGO AND RIGHT NOW IT’S DOING ABOUT 7000 VACCINATIONS A DAY WITH PLANS TO EVENTUALLY RAMP UP TO 12,000. IT’S OPEN FOR ALL PHASE 1A HEALTH CARE WORKERS AND SENIORS 65 AND OLDER. ORANGE COUNTY LAUNCHED A VACCINATION SUPER SITE AT DISNEYLAND BACK ON JANUARY 13. OFFICIALS IN ORANGE COUNTY TELL US THEY ARE GIVING ABOUT 3,000 SHOTS A DAY, 7 DAYS A WEEK. IT IS OPEN FOR PHASE 1A HEALTH CARE WORKERS AND SENIORS 65 AND OLDER. AND PETCO PARK IN SAN DIEGO, HOME OF THE PADRES BASEBALL TEAM, HAS HAD ITS VACCINE OPERATION UP AND RUNNING SINCE JANUARY 11. ACCORDING TO THE COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT, THE PETCO SITE IS VACCINATING 3,800 TO 4,500 PEOPLE PER DAY. IT’S OPEN FOR ALL THOSE IN PHASE 1A AND SENIORS 65 AND OLDER. SO, WHY ARE CAL EXPO’S NUMBERS SO MUCH LOWER? >> EACH COUNTY IS HAS A SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT STRATEGY IN SACRAMENTO, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE’RE TRYING TO MAKE SURE OF IS THAT WE HAVE ENOUGH VACCINE FOR OUR PARTNERS AS WELL. BECAUSE EVEN THOUGH THE MASS VACCINATION SITES ARE GOOD FOR BEING ABLE TO HAVE HIGH THROUGHPUT, WE ALSO HAVE AN EYE ON EQUITY, WE WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE HAVE PLACES WHERE PEOPLE WHO DON’T HAVE TRANSPORTATION CAN GO. SO BEING ABLE TO HAVE PARTNERSHIP WITH PLACES LIKE SAFEWAY, WHERE THEY’RE IN NEIGHBORHOODS, WHERE PEOPLE CAN ACTUALLY WALK UP AND GET VACCINATED. BRIAN: SACRAMENTO COUNTY HEALTH OFFICER DR. OLIVIA KASIRYE SAYS THERE ARE SEVERAL CHALLENGES THAT CONTRIBUTED TO THE SLOWER RAMP UP. SHE SAYS THERE WERE DELAYS IN GETTING THE NATIONAL GUARD IN POSITION AND TRAINED. LOGISTICAL ISSUES AT CAL EXPO, SUCH AS THE NUMBER OF CARS ALLOWED ON THE PROPERTY. SHE SAYS IT TOOK TIME TO TRANSFORM THE SITE FROM TESTING TO VACCINATION AND ALSO THE STRATEGIC DECISIONS YOU HEARD HER MENTION, WHICH DIVERTED THE VAST MAJORITY OF ITS 88,000 VACCINE DOSES AWAY FROM CAL EXPO. >> WE ALSO WANTED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE HAD ENOUGH VACCINE TO KEEP IT GOING. AND SO WE ARE PLEASED THAT THIS FOLLOWING WEEK, FOR EXAMPLE, WE ARE GETTING 15,000 DOSES SO IF WE CAN MAINTAIN IT AT TH RATE, AND IT WILL BE REGULAR THAT WILL HELP US IN BEING ABLE , TO MAKE LONG TERM PLANS. BRIAN: I CALLED THE CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH FOR RE— FOR REACTION TO THE NUMBERS, AND THEY SAID COUNTIES MAKE THEIR OWN DECISIONS ON HOW TO USE THE VACCINE AND IT WOULD BE UNFAIR TO LOOK ONLY AT THE NUMBER OF SHOTS GIVEN AT CAL EXPO AND CONCLUDE THE COUNTY IS DOING A POOR JOB WITH VACCINE ADMINISTRATION. I DID ASK THE DOCTOR IF THE STATE WANTS CAL EXPO TO BE A SUPER SITE, WHY ISN’T SHE GETTING A SUPER SUPPLY? SHE SAID THOSE CONVERSATIONS HAVE BEEN HAD WITH THE STATE FOR NOW, THERE’S ONLY SO MUCH TO GO AROUND. GULSTAN: IT FEELS LIKE WE ARE GETTING OVERLOOKED AT THIS POINT. WHAT ABOUT GETTING CAL EXPO TO THE POINT WHERE WE CAN VACCINATE MORE PEOPLE, INCLUDING THOSE 65 AND OLDER? THERE ARE A LOT OF PEOPLE IN OUR AREA WHO ARE WONDERING WHEN THAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN. BRIAN: IT’S A GOOD QUESTION. IT GOES BACK TO THAT STRATEGIC DECISION WE TALKED ABOUT FOR THE COUNTY. EVENTUALLY CAL EXPO PLANS TO GIVE SENIORS THE SHOT, BUT FOR NOW, THE DOCTOR SAYS THEY THINK THE BEST WAY TO GO ABOUT IT IS TO HAVE THE CLINICS AND HOSPITALS HANDLE THE 65-PLUS, SO CAL EXPO CAN FOCUS ONLY ON HEALTH CARE WORKERS WHO STILL HAVEN’T RECEIVED THE VACCINE. GULS

‘This is untrue’: Sacramento County clears up teacher COVID-19 vaccination confusion

Public health explains educators not yet eligible for vaccination

Sacramento County Public Health sent an email out Sunday evening to clear up confusion that educators are now eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations. The email from the county was in response to social media posts indicating that teachers were able to begin scheduling appointments.“This is untrue,” the county said in an email. “People have also been sharing vaccination registration links on social media and attempting to schedule appointments prior to being eligible, which delays our ability to vaccinate priority groups such as seniors.” Currently, the only Phase 1B subgroups eligible are those 65 and older, as well as law enforcement and emergency services workers. The county explains that includes roughly 200,000 people who are 65 and older — which is greater than the current vaccine supply from the state. Childcare, education and food and agriculture workers are Phase 1B subgroups that have not yet been cleared to schedule appointments. However, teachers’ unions within the county explained teachers who qualify for an eligible subgroup are allowed to schedule a vaccination appointment — for example, if they are 65 or older or a caregiver. Local clinics, such as Urgent Care Now, are also following county tier eligibility. “We are not vaccinating educators unless over 65,” the clinic said in an email to KCRA3. “Everyone has to show proof of tier level. If they do not meet the criteria they are getting cancelled.”County public health added it will be staggering vaccination appointment invitations by sub-group and expect it will take significant time to vaccinate everyone in Phase 1B.”We assure you that when K-12 school staff become eligible for vaccination in Sacramento County, you will hear about it from us, not Facebook or Nextdoor!”Find out the groups Sacramento County Public Health is vaccinating on the SCPH Vaccination Schedule. Register your interest in getting vaccinated from the COVID-19 Vaccine webpage. For those ages 65 and up living in Sacramento County, learn about appointments: http://bit.ly/COVIDvax65plus

Sacramento County Public Health sent an email out Sunday evening to clear up confusion that educators are now eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations.

The email from the county was in response to social media posts indicating that teachers were able to begin scheduling appointments.

“This is untrue,” the county said in an email. “People have also been sharing vaccination registration links on social media and attempting to schedule appointments prior to being eligible, which delays our ability to vaccinate priority groups such as seniors.”

Currently, the only Phase 1B subgroups eligible are those 65 and older, as well as law enforcement and emergency services workers. The county explains that includes roughly 200,000 people who are 65 and older — which is greater than the current vaccine supply from the state.

Childcare, education and food and agriculture workers are Phase 1B subgroups that have not yet been cleared to schedule appointments.

However, teachers’ unions within the county explained teachers who qualify for an eligible subgroup are allowed to schedule a vaccination appointment — for example, if they are 65 or older or a caregiver.

Local clinics, such as Urgent Care Now, are also following county tier eligibility.

“We are not vaccinating educators unless over 65,” the clinic said in an email to KCRA3. “Everyone has to show proof of tier level. If they do not meet the criteria they are getting cancelled.”

County public health added it will be staggering vaccination appointment invitations by sub-group and expect it will take significant time to vaccinate everyone in Phase 1B.

“We assure you that when K-12 school staff become eligible for vaccination in Sacramento County, you will hear about it from us, not Facebook or Nextdoor!”

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