Del Mar Fairgrounds Open As COVID-19 Vaccine Site, Fifth Super Station In County
Scripps Health, San Diego County and the Del Mar Fairgrounds are partnering to open a COVID-19 vaccination super station at the fairgrounds Friday. It is the fifth super site in the region.
The Scripps Del Mar Fairgrounds Vaccination Super Station, located at 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., will provide drive-through and walk-through services on an appointment-only basis to anyone eligible to receive a shot under county guidelines.
Scripps President and CEO Chris Van Gorder administered the first vaccination.
“We are only doing 288 today just to make sure we got all of our systems down before we increase," Van Gorder said. “We’ll do another 588 on Saturday and Sunday and then we will slowly start ramping up to as much as 5000 or more per day. This is a great venue, it all depends a little bit on the COVID vaccine and how much we can get.”
Current plans call for the station to open initially from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, and from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday and Sunday. Scripps said the site will not be impacted this weekend by the vaccine delivery delay to the county that will shut down the Petco Park superstation Sunday through Tuesday.
Longer hours and more days of operation will be added as more vaccine doses become available. Appointment slots will be posted once they are available on the county's vaccination website at www.vaccinationsuperstationsd.com.
"This super station will be the next major part of our regional vaccination strategy," County Supervisor Terra Lawson-Remer said. "Our biggest challenge right now is vaccine supply, but we are preparing this large venue to ensure we are ready to ramp up vaccination distribution as quickly as possible when more doses become available."
Scripps will provide the clinical staff members who will administer the shots, the county will supply the vaccine doses, and the Del Mar Fairgrounds is making a portion of its facilities available to house the operation.
"As an accessible public facility with plenty of space and a team eager to help, it really makes sense for the Del Mar Fairgrounds to serve as a vaccination super station," said Carlene Moore, fairgrounds interim CEO. "We also have the capacity, should the vaccine supply be there and the county needs it, that we can expand into additional buildings here without them having to find another location.”
Free parking will be available for those using the walk-through option.
Along with the five superstations, San Diego county has 17 community pods to provide the shots. The issue now is vaccine supply.
“It’s very tight right now in San Diego County. In fact I know there was an emergency call this morning from the county to the state trying to get more vaccine down here," Van Gorder said. "We're blessed we have enough right now for the next few days and we hope we’ll get resupplied.”
San Diego County coronavirus inoculation sites have received 651,450 doses of vaccine and administered 550,707 doses, according to the county's Health and Human Services Agency.
A total of 15.5% of San Diegans age 16 and over have received at least one of the two shots required to develop antibody protection against the virus. Around 3.3% of the population over the age of 16 is fully vaccinated.