Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Fresno County Says No More 'First' COVID Vaccinations Until Mid-February
TLBBHMAP3-U010ALB5ANM-348f959abae2-512-300x300-1
By Jim Jakobs, Digital Producer
Published 3 years ago on
February 4, 2021

Share

As Governor Gavin Newsom was touting the benefits of new FEMA mass distribution vaccine sites in Oakland and Los Angeles, officials at the Fresno County Department of Public Health were left scratching their heads as to why the Central Valley was left out.

“Fresno County was not chosen to host a FEMA site,” said Health Manager Joe Prado during a Wednesday call with reporters. “We’ll continue to request that.”

“We’re looking at first doses starting again at the Fresno Fairgrounds the week of February 15th.”Fresno County Community Health Manager Joe Prado

Newsom said the Oakland site should be able to administer around 6,000 shots each day. Meanwhile, Prado is trying to manage the Fresno County’s allocation of just 8,000 doses per week — only enough for people waiting for their second shot.

“We’re looking at first doses starting again at the Fresno Fairgrounds the week of February 15th” says Prado.

GV Wire℠ asked Prado why the county is not getting a FEMA site that would increase available doses beyond the 8,000 currently being received.

Fresno County meets every criteria of an equity lens,” answered Prado. “We’re one of the more impoverished communities in the state of California, we have a distribution system in place that can meet the needs of additional dose allocation. So I just feel Fresno County, with an exclamation point, could manage additional doses.”

Prado says if the county would need to receive 50,000 to 60,000 doses each week to reach the goal of vaccinating 650,000 people by August 1. That’s the target for to achieving widespread immunity against COVID-19.

Making matters more difficult, the state is changing the way it calculates how much vaccine each county will receive and Fresno County stands to receive even fewer doses than it currently gets.

By February 16, the state will completely remove the health care worker population from its calculation and only base vaccine allocations on the number of people 65 and older who reside in the county.

This means Fresno County will actually get less vaccine than it is currently receiving.

  • Healthcare workers and those over 65 make up about 2.26% of the county’s population
  • The 65 and older population by itself (which the state will base allocation on in mid-February) makes up just  2.09% of the county’s population

“It’s actually a reduction to the Fresno County allocation when we actually go to the 65 plus allocation formula,” explains Prado. “That’s something we don’t like at Fresno County.”

Gov. Gavin Newsom speaks during a virtual briefing from the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on Wednesday. California is joining with the federal government to open two new mass vaccination centers as test areas for new President Joseph Biden’s effort to create 100 such sites nationwide in 100 days, Newsom said. The sites at the Coliseum and California State University, Los Angeles, will be jointly run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. (YouTube/Governor Newsom)

County Supervisor Magsig: “Central Valley Is Not a Priority”

portrait of Nathan Magsig

“Our governor, as well as our legislature, has made clear that the Central Valley is not a priority, regardless of what metric you want to use.”Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig

Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig says Fresno County was never getting its fair share of the vaccine.

“Our governor, as well as our legislature, has made clear that the Central Valley is not a priority, regardless of what metric you want to use,” said Magsig.

He says under the current state metric, the county is not getting a proportionate share of the vaccine even based upon the population of Fresno County, which represents about two and a half percent of all state residents.

“We should be getting two and a half percent of the doses the state gets. We never got that,” says Magsig. He says the county has the ability to administer more vaccinations, there’s just not enough doses being provided.

He says the new state metric based on the population of those 65 and older will make things worse.

“Here in the Central Valley, typically we have younger families compared to the rest of the state,” he says. “But we also have the most vulnerable populations, people who deal with asthma, people who have diabetes, people who deal with high blood pressure. And in addition, we have the number one agricultural workforce.”

Magsig believes the new state allocation formula will benefit Northern and Southern California the most. He also says it makes no logical sense that Fresno County would not be identified as a site for a FEMA vaccination site.

On January 26, the County Board of Supervisors sent a letter to Newsom pleading for more vaccine.

Magsig says the Board has yet to receive a response.

Educators Pushed Into March

County educators were originally scheduled to get vaccinated in February. Due to a lack of vaccine, it is unlikely that target will be met.

“Realistically, I don’t see the educational community here happening in February,” said Prado. “If we continue to receive 8,000 doses a week by the end of March, we will have received roughly 177,000 doses. That barely gets us to the 65 and over population.”

Prado believes those in the educational community may not get vaccinated until late March or even into April. He said that assumes the vaccine produced by Johnson & Johnson receives an emergency use authorization from the federal government, which will increase the total amount of vaccine available.

Gaston Middle School Site

Fresno County is launching a new vaccination site at Gaston Middle School the week of February 15.

The site will be brought online just in time to offer another spot for those 65 and older to get vaccinated. Prado says it is a very short walk from the parking lot to the gym which will hopefully make it very accessible for that population.

The county asks people to fill out an online interest form in advance of the site’s opening day using this link.

[activecampaign form=25]

DON'T MISS

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

DON'T MISS

Merced Supervisors Accused of ‘Triple Crown Race’ of Failures Amid Talk of Closing Fire Stations

DON'T MISS

Teacher Appreciation Week Surprises That Educators Will Love

DON'T MISS

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

DON'T MISS

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

DON'T MISS

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

DON'T MISS

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

DON'T MISS

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

DON'T MISS

Reacher Star Alan Ritchson Calls Donald Trump a ‘Rapist’

DON'T MISS

Community Leaders Call for Transparency in Fresno Superintendent Search

UP NEXT

Merced Supervisors Accused of ‘Triple Crown Race’ of Failures Amid Talk of Closing Fire Stations

UP NEXT

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

UP NEXT

Reacher Star Alan Ritchson Calls Donald Trump a ‘Rapist’

UP NEXT

From Tragedy to Triumph: The Land Before Time Litter’s Journey

UP NEXT

Oakland Officials Vote to Include ‘San Francisco’ in Airport’s Name

UP NEXT

Several Writers Decline Recognition From PEN America in Protest Over Its Israel-Hamas War Stance

UP NEXT

US Consumer Sentiment Falls Slightly as Outlook for Inflation Worsens

UP NEXT

Tennessee Lawmakers Send Bill to Ban First-Cousin Marriages to Governor

UP NEXT

Instagram Blurs Nude Messages to Protect Teens, Fight Sexual Extortion

UP NEXT

Fresno Monopoly is Coming. You Have a Chance to Make It Your Own.

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

15 hours ago

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

1 day ago

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

1 day ago

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

1 day ago

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

1 day ago

Reacher Star Alan Ritchson Calls Donald Trump a ‘Rapist’

1 day ago

Community Leaders Call for Transparency in Fresno Superintendent Search

1 day ago

Israeli Settlers Rampage Through a West Bank Village, Killing 1 Palestinian and Wounding 25

1 day ago

US Intelligence Finding Shows China Surging Equipment Sales to Russia to Help War Effort in Ukraine

1 day ago

From Tragedy to Triumph: The Land Before Time Litter’s Journey

1 day ago

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

When Sacramento changed its plan to demolish a homeless encampment on a vacant lot on Colfax Street, instead offering the homeless occupants...

13 hours ago

13 hours ago

Sacramento Gave Homeless Camp a Lease as an Experiment. Here’s What Happened.

14 hours ago

Merced Supervisors Accused of ‘Triple Crown Race’ of Failures Amid Talk of Closing Fire Stations

14 hours ago

Teacher Appreciation Week Surprises That Educators Will Love

15 hours ago

A Mission of Mercy, Then a Fatal Strike: How an Aid Convoy in Gaza Became Israel’s Target

1 day ago

Walberg Era Begins With a Charge to ‘Revolutionize’ Bulldogs Basketball

1 day ago

California Man Sentenced to 40 Years to Life for Fatal Freeway Shooting of 6-Year-Old Boy

1 day ago

16 Clovis Students Rewarded With Scholarships for Their Resilience

1 day ago

Dr. Green Thumb’s Is Open. Sweet Flower Debuts Saturday in Fresno Cannabis Rollout.

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend