Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Hospitals Prepare to Get First Vaccine Doses. Here's California's Plan.
gvw_ap_news
By Associated Press
Published 3 years ago on
December 12, 2020

Share

SACRAMENTO — As California reported a record of nearly 35,500 positive coronavirus cases on Friday, there’s a glimmer of hope: The state is awaiting the first batch of coronavirus vaccine and plans to distribute it to hospitals to inoculate healthcare workers on the front lines of the pandemic.

The state expects to receive 327,000 doses of Pfizer’s vaccine within days. Counties will have specific allotments that will be distributed to hospitals that have adequate storage capacity and the ability to vaccinate people quickly.

The doses will arrive as the state grapples with a spiraling number of COVID-19 cases, soaring hospitalizations and record death counts. To buy time, much of the state is under a stay-at-home order due to dwindling intensive care unit capacity.

Officials said they expect more doses to arrive once federal regulators review Moderna’s vaccine next week. They said other manufacturers could later follow, increasing the amount of vaccine available in the state in 2021.

Here’s the plans so far for COVID-19 vaccination in California:

When Is the Vaccine Arriving?

The initial doses of Pfizer’s vaccine are expected to be shipped as soon as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gives the go-ahead, a decision expected at least by this weekend. A consortium of Western states including California formed their own safety committee that is doing its own review in parallel with the FDA’s consideration and could give its final approval as soon as the FDA acts.

It’s then a matter of how quickly the vials can be shipped across the nation from the company’s warehouse in Kalamazoo, Mich. The doses are packed in dry ice in what have been nicknamed “pizza boxes.” The state expects two more batches later this month, then weekly allocations next year, said Dr. Paul Simon, chief science officer with Los Angeles County’s Department of Public Health.

Elizabeth Fernandez, a hospital spokeswoman for the University of California San Francisco, said the first shipment could arrive Tuesday and be administered Wednesday.

How Will the Doses Be Distributed?

The initial doses will be distributed to hospitals that can show they have the capacity to safely store and administer the vaccine in line with Pfizer’s guidelines. In Los Angeles County, nine sites with ultra cold freezers capable of storing Pfizer’s vaccine will receive the initial allocations, Simon said.

Hospitals also must attest that they have a plan to distribute all doses within five days, said Dr. Clayton Chau, Orange County’s public health officer. The distribution is tricky because the vaccines must be stored at low and ultra-low temperatures, Santa Clara County said in a statement.

Many of the details were still being worked out with county health agencies, hospital officials said on Friday.

Who Will Receive the First Doses?

Federal officials and a state community vaccine committee have spelled out the priority list for vaccines, with healthcare workers at greatest risk of virus exposure at the top. Chau said that could include emergency room and intensive care unit personnel.

“Local hospitals will need to determine which segment of their employee populations are at higher risk for contracting the virus due to this limited quantity,” he said.

Fernandez, at UCSF, said that the hospital has yet to decide which health workers will be among the first to receive the vaccine. To start, the hospital will receive 975 doses, but can store far more with two ultra-low freezers that can each hold up to 600,000 doses. “We have plenty of storage capacity,” she said.

These first doses of vaccine will go exclusively to hospitals for healthcare workers. Subsequent doses will also be set aside for healthcare workers, as well as residents and workers at long-term care and skilled-nursing facilities, who can expect to receive doses of the vaccine through local pharmacies, Chau said.

Essential workers including teachers and school staff will among the next groups prioritized for vaccination, said Dr. Erica Pan, the acting state public health officer. The general public can expect to be vaccinated in the spring and summer, Chau said.

RELATED TOPICS:

DON'T MISS

Biden Backs House’s Aid Package for Ukraine, Israel While Speaker Johnson Battles to Retain Position

DON'T MISS

Hot Rod Willys: Driven to Bake the Perfect Chicago-Style Pizza

DON'T MISS

Local Leaders Must Put Their Shoulders Into Making Fresno ‘Education City USA’

DON'T MISS

EdSource Welcomes Fresno News Veteran Jim Boren to Its Board

DON'T MISS

Senate Dismissed Two Articles of Impeachment, Ending Trial on Mayorkas

DON'T MISS

Netanyahu Dismisses Calls for Restraint, Says Israel Will Decide Iran Attack Response

DON'T MISS

New Study Calculates Climate Change’s Economic Bite Will Hit About $38 Trillion a Year by 2049

DON'T MISS

Biden Pledges to Block Japanese Takeover of US Steel and Promises Tariffs on Chinese Steel

DON'T MISS

Don Arax Talks About His New Football Job at Visalia’s Central Valley Christian

DON'T MISS

Dem House Challengers Salas, Gray Flex Fundraising Muscle

UP NEXT

Myanmar’s Ousted Leader Suu Kyi Moved From Prison to House Arrest Due to Heat, Military Says

UP NEXT

NPR Editor Suspended Over Claims of Network’s ‘Progressive Worldview’

UP NEXT

Wall Street’s Mixed Trading Day

UP NEXT

New Recruiting Programs Put Army, Air Force on Track to Meet Enlistment Goals. Navy Will Fall Short

UP NEXT

Justice Thomas Misses Supreme Court Session Monday With No Explanation

UP NEXT

‘Civil War’ Declares Victory at the Box Office, Toppling ‘Godzilla X Kong’

UP NEXT

Scheffler Turns the Masters Into Another Sunday Yawner With a Dominating Win

UP NEXT

Vegas, US Tour and More Signings: Wrexham Has Plenty of Fun and Work Ahead After Latest Promotion

UP NEXT

NBA Play-in Game Preview: West Games on Tuesday, East Games on Wednesday, Eliminations on Friday

UP NEXT

Ship That Caused Bridge Collapse Had Apparent Electrical Issues While Still Docked, Source Says

EdSource Welcomes Fresno News Veteran Jim Boren to Its Board

12 hours ago

Senate Dismissed Two Articles of Impeachment, Ending Trial on Mayorkas

13 hours ago

Netanyahu Dismisses Calls for Restraint, Says Israel Will Decide Iran Attack Response

13 hours ago

New Study Calculates Climate Change’s Economic Bite Will Hit About $38 Trillion a Year by 2049

14 hours ago

Biden Pledges to Block Japanese Takeover of US Steel and Promises Tariffs on Chinese Steel

14 hours ago

Don Arax Talks About His New Football Job at Visalia’s Central Valley Christian

14 hours ago

Dem House Challengers Salas, Gray Flex Fundraising Muscle

16 hours ago

Career-High Strike Outs for Ryan Weathers as Marlins Best Giants 6-3

16 hours ago

LeBron’s Lakers Top Pelicans in Play-in, Set up Playoff Rematch With Nuggets

16 hours ago

Storm Dumps Record Rain and Floods Dubai’s Airport

17 hours ago

Biden Backs House’s Aid Package for Ukraine, Israel While Speaker Johnson Battles to Retain Position

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden said Wednesday that he strongly supports a proposal from House Speaker Mike Johnson to provide aid to Ukrai...

11 hours ago

11 hours ago

Biden Backs House’s Aid Package for Ukraine, Israel While Speaker Johnson Battles to Retain Position

11 hours ago

Hot Rod Willys: Driven to Bake the Perfect Chicago-Style Pizza

12 hours ago

Local Leaders Must Put Their Shoulders Into Making Fresno ‘Education City USA’

12 hours ago

EdSource Welcomes Fresno News Veteran Jim Boren to Its Board

13 hours ago

Senate Dismissed Two Articles of Impeachment, Ending Trial on Mayorkas

13 hours ago

Netanyahu Dismisses Calls for Restraint, Says Israel Will Decide Iran Attack Response

14 hours ago

New Study Calculates Climate Change’s Economic Bite Will Hit About $38 Trillion a Year by 2049

14 hours ago

Biden Pledges to Block Japanese Takeover of US Steel and Promises Tariffs on Chinese Steel

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend