Throughout this pandemic, we have all held out hope for the development of a safe and effective vaccine to combat the novel coronavirus. Last month, we received the much-awaited good news of two new drugs receiving approval from the FDA. The production and distribution of these vaccines are critical resources in our ongoing battle against COVID-19.
Currently, our nation has been focused on distributing vaccines to frontline healthcare workers. In Los Angeles County, there are still some 500,000 healthcare workers that still need to get vaccinated, which the County hopes will be complete by the end of January, as soon as more doses are received from the State. To help with this massive undertaking, the County will be opening up several large-scale vaccination sites on Tuesday, January 19th, one of which will be located at California State University, Northridge. This site will provide convenient access to the vaccine for Valley residents as the County moves through the various phases of vaccine distribution.
We know many of our stakeholders have questions about how the vaccine is being prioritized and distributed, who is deciding that, and how to obtain an appointment for a vaccine once it becomes available. You can find answers to these and many other questions on the LA County Department of Public Health website HERE. And to get the latest updates about vaccine availability in Los Angeles, you can sign up for the Public Health COVID-19 Vaccine Email Newsletter by clicking HERE.
To help inform the public on the latest vaccine information, the Department of Public Health is also hosting a COVID-19 Vaccine Virtual Town Hall on January 19.
Currently, the prioritization of vaccinations by the Department of Public Health is as follows:
PHASE 1A: currently underway
- Healthcare workers and residents of skilled nursing facilities and other long-term care facilities, hospitals, correctional facilities, other medical and treatment facilities, EMTs and paramedics
- Healthcare Workers including those working in mental health, children and family services, short-term residential therapeutic programs, transitional shelter care program facilities, urgent care clinics, and outreach workers
- Healthcare Workers such as dental and oral health clinics, optometry clinics, pharmacies, occupational health, death care (mortuaries), laboratories and COVID-19 testing
- Persons 65 years and older
- Those at risk of exposure at work in education, childcare, emergency services, and food and agriculture
- Those at risk of exposure who work in transportation and logistics, industrial, commercial, residential, and sheltering facilities and services, critical manufacturing, and congregate settings with outbreak risk
- Persons 50-64 years old
- People 16-49 years of age and have an underlying health condition or disability which increases their risk of severe COVID-19
- Those at risk of exposure at work in sectors such as water and wastewater, energy, defense, chemical and hazardous materials, and government operations / community-based essential functions
- Persons 16-49 years old without high-risk medical conditions