San Diego County's Fourth Vaccine 'Super Station' Opens At Grossmont Center In La Mesa
UPDATE: 10:17 a.m., Feb. 2, 2021
Sergio Rodriguez from Jamul arrived at a shopping center in La Mesa with both of his parents Tuesday morning. It wasn’t a place he’d normally come to see to his family’s health, but today was different.
“They are 80 years old and I was thanking God, let them live through this and three five, ten more years — I want them to be healthy,” he said.
Rodriguez brought his parents to get them vaccinated against COVID-19. They were among the first to make use of San Diego County's fourth COVID-19 Vaccination Super Station, which opened Tuesday at the Grossmont Center Mall in La Mesa.
The East County location joins similar sites in Chula Vista, downtown San Diego and San Marcos, while a smaller point of distribution opened at the San Ysidro Southwestern College campus.
The Sharp HealthCare Grossmont Center Super Station, 5500 Grossmont Center Drive, Ste. 212, will be open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., starting with the capacity to inoculate up to 2,000 people a day, with plans to expand to handle up to 5,000 vaccinations daily.
Sharp is providing 40 volunteers to staff 10 registration desks and 20 vaccination stations. The walk-thru clinic is located in the former Charlotte Russe clothing store. Reservations are required and can be made at vaccinationsuperstationsd.com.
The Grossmont Center location joins the Petco Park UC San Diego Health Super Station downtown, Sharp HealthCare South Bay Super Station in Chula Vista and Cal State University San Marcos Super Station, as well as multiple smaller sites in locations around the county.
"Opening this fourth Vaccination Super Station increases our ability as a county to administer the vaccine to healthcare workers and those over 65," said San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chair Nathan Fletcher. "We have quickly reached a milestone of having Super Stations in the south, central, north and now eastern portions of the county."
Sharp is the first health care provider to operate two Super Stations.
The Grossmont Center walk-thru site will replace and expand the site Sharp HealthCare had been operating on Wakarusa Street. Appointments made for that site transfer to the super station at the mall.
"Moving to this new site at Grossmont Center allows us to broaden our reach to the community in partnership with the Grossmont Healthcare District and the County of San Diego," said Scott Evans, CEO of Sharp Grossmont Hospital and chairman of Sharp's COVID-19 vaccination program.
"At the previous district site, we administered nearly 17,000 COVID- 19 vaccination doses since Jan. 12 to our East County residents," he said. "Through this partnership, as well as our partnerships with the city of Coronado and the city of Chula Vista, Sharp has so far administered nearly 40,000 vaccine doses at county community clinics. We look forward to vaccinating thousands more in the weeks and months ahead as part of our commitment to help vaccinate our region against COVID-19."
The county is currently only vaccinating people who live or work in San Diego County and are health care workers and or 65 or older.
Larry Papike who was one of the first people in line to get vaccinated in La Mesa Monday.
“We’re 72 years old and we’ve been at home for a year and we haven’t been able to do anything,” he said. “We’re ready to get out and get it done.”
Others shared his enthusiasm, saying the vaccine represents hope.
“I’m locked in, can’t do anything,” said Patrick Guiant. “I retired back in April — can’t do anything — if I want to do anything I have to travel out of town and don't want to travel.”
Doctors, pharmacies, community clinics and other health care providers are also providing vaccinations to San Diegans in the priority groups.
While vaccines have arrived in the region, supplies remain extremely limited. People are asked to please be patient -- as supply increases, providers will be able to perform more vaccinations.
As of Monday, 1.9% of San Diego County residents aged 16 and up have been fully vaccinated.