Sites for mass vaccinations start opening in CA, Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- In order to achieve Governor Newsom's goal of vaccinating one million additional people by this weekend, mass vaccination sites are opening up at stadiums and fairgrounds around California.

They include Cal Expo in Sacramento, Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles and Petco Park in San Diego.

VACCINE TRACKER: See California's rollout progress, when you might get vaccinated

On Monday night, Orange County announced that Disneyland Resort in Anaheim will be the county's first large vaccine dispensing site. The park will remain closed to visitors.

In the Bay Area, two sports stadiums are being considered for mass vaccination sites.

Officials in Alameda County are expected to vote this week about launching a drive-thru vaccine site at an Oakland Coliseum parking lot.

The 49ers sent the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors a letter offering up Levi's Stadium as a site to store and administer vaccines to residents.

On Monday, San Mateo County launched the Bay Area's first mass vaccination clinic.

"The vaccine - we need to find a way to scale it," said San Mateo County Supervisor, David Canepa. He wants to see one to two thousand people a day get vaccinated at the county event center.

Health care workers and people in long-term care facilities lined up at the event center on Monday for the drive-thru clinic.

"Hopefully what we'll be able to do is to learn quickly from our mistakes and create a a model that works," said Canepa.
San Francisco supervisor Matt Haney wondered when the City's Department of Public Health would do the same.

Haney asked, "They said that they as the San Francisco Department of Public Health are not responsible for mass distribution of the vaccine. Well then who is?"

San Francisco's COVID Command Center sent ABC7 News an email suggesting that because most residents are privately insured, it would rely on health care providers and systems, like Kaiser, UCSF and Sutter, to deliver the vaccine.

"It is the wrong approach to just deflect and defer to private providers," said Haney. "If we just say well go talk to Kaiser, I don't think it's going to get done fast enough."
Chief of Emergency Medicine at Zuckerberg San Francisco General, Dr. Chris Colwell, said the hospital just created a new area on the fourth floor of the old hospital exclusively for giving vaccines.

"Just having a large space is not the answer by itself, but it is part of this. The design of the space, getting lots of people in and out in an efficient manner is important," said Colwell. He added, "You can't just bring everybody into a stadium and get them all vaccinated. You need to do it in a way that respects social distancing respects safety at the same time."

Beyond physical space, Dr. Colwell said the right messaging to vulnerable populations, who may be reluctant to get the vaccine, is also important in order to ensure everyone's safety. He said, "Getting this information out so people can make informed decisions is a critically important aspect of this because that has been a challenge as well."

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