Which health care workers will be 1st to get COVID-19 vaccine? Newsom has a plan

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KGO) -- Governor Newsom says the first doses of coronavirus vaccines could arrive in California in just weeks. But who will be getting some of the first shots?

"There is light at the end of the tunnel, we're a few months from seeing real progress with vaccine," said Governor Newsom.

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Newsom said Thursday, California should get the first round of COVID-19 vaccines between Dec, 12-15. But with only 327,000 doses to start, high-risk health care workers are top priority.

The state's three tiered distribution plan looks like this:

Tier 1
Workers in Acute care facilities, skilled nursing facilities and dialysis centers

Tier 2
  • Intermediate health care facilities
  • In-home health workers
  • Community health workers


Tier 3
  • Lab workers
  • Dental offices
  • Pharmacies


ABC7 News contributor Dr. Alok Patel said the plan must be based on safety, equity and transparency.

"That's really important to building trust. Making sure people trust the system of distribution, but actually go and get the vaccine when it's their opportunity to," Patel said.

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Newsom says no special treatment for those with money or influence.

"Those who think they can get ahead of the line, using relationships or resources, we'll monitor that closely," he said.

Newsom says more vaccines will arrive between January and March for essential workers and eventually, the general public.

Hospital worker Linnea Hollenbeck says her front line colleagues deserve the vaccine.

"They've been working so hard these many months, they're exhausted and many have gotten ill already," said Hollenbeck who works at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco.

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