Main COVID vaccine clinic near Oakland City Hall closes amid high holiday demand for boosters

J.R. Stone Image
Thursday, December 9, 2021
Main COVID vaccine clinic near Oakland City Hall closes
The closure of a main COVID vaccine clinic in Oakland during a time of such high demand, is raising eyebrows.

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Amid major concerns over where to get a booster shots, there is plenty of finger-pointing after one of Oakland's main vaccination clinics permanently closed.

As ABC7 is learning about that, we're also learning about the temporary closure of another vaccination site in San Mateo.

This comes at a time when clinics are busier than ever, with people coming out to get their booster shots ahead of the holidays.

The main vaccination clinic in Oakland that was once next to City Hall is now permanently closed.

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The site run by the third party group, COVID Clinic, was giving first, second and third shots to patients, had given more than 800 shots.

As to why they would close at a time when there is such strong demand? Well, that's where the finger-pointing is coming from.

Initially city officials said in a press release, "COVID Clinic in Downtown Oakland abruptly closes due to staffing and vaccine shortages."

But those with the clinic say that was, and is not, the case.

VIDEO: Bay Area pharmacies canceling, postponing booster appointments as high demand increases

High demand for the COVID-19 booster shot is causing some Bay Area pharmacies to run out of doses, leading to postponed or even canceled appointments.

City representatives then clarified what happened saying, the city asked the clinic to stay until the end of the month, with an option to stay into 2022, if demand was still high. Those from COVID Clinic say if an option to stay longer was set in place they wouldn't have left, but did ink a deal at a site in Oakland's Fruitvale District to offer coronavirus testing and vaccines well into 2022. Their staff has since been moved there.

It's just one in a number of confusing situations involving COVID-19 vaccination locations.

RELATED: SF residents struggle to secure COVID booster appts before holidays

On Monday at San Mateo Medical Center, there was a staff shortage at the vaccination clinic, run by the HR Support Group and separate of the hospital. Because of the staff shortage, the clinic was unable to open.

180 appointments for first, second, or third shots had to be rescheduled. County officials say they've been told the issue has been addressed, and is no longer a problem.

As to the situation in Oakland, the city says they are disappointed with the non-profit clinic, while the clinic says the city made promises that weren't kept.

ABC7's J.R. Stone went online Wednesday night to see what other options are nearby. There were appointments at Walgreens locations in Oakland this week for vaccines and boosters.