Newsom Says Vaccination Phases Flexible, More Health Care Staff Coming To California
Monday, January 11, 2021
Photo by Jae C. Hong AP
Over the weekend the state reported a two-day record of 1,163 COVID-19 deaths, but Governor Gavin Newsom said there is reason to be optimistic.
“You’ll see a 6% increase in the total number of hospitalizations over the last 14 days, patients with COVID-19. That's among the smallest increases we've seen over a two week period in some time,” Newsom said.
Due to the increased stress on hospitals and those helping to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, California has secured roughly 1,900 state and federal staff to help vaccine rollout. The governor said the state plans on adding more health care workers this week.
“We expect within seven days, more LVNs, more RNs, more respiratory specialists, about 1,000 contract staff will hit the ground,” he said.
The state will vastly expand its effort with new mass vaccination sites at parking lots for LA’s Dodger Stadium, Petco Park in San Diego and the CalExpo site in Sacramento. Cars lined up early Monday near the downtown stadium in San Diego, where officials aimed to inoculate 5,000 health care workers a day at the “vaccination super station.”
Newsom also announced the pool of people who can administer COVID-19 vaccines has been further expanded to include pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, dentists, National Guard strike teams and local paramedics and EMTs.
“We're seeing more and more paramedics partnering with the counties. Local health officers are encouraging this and we are very supportive and EMTs as this local option for additional vaccinators to help administer these vaccines faster,” Newsom said.
With a goal of administering 1 million more vaccinations expiring this upcoming weekend, Newsom said there has been a turn towards flexibility in who can receive the shots.
“We now have flexibility where we can move into these phases and these tiers which include people 75 and older, people 65 and over, if those folks aren't available so there's no waste, more flexibility, more capacity."
Newsom reiterated that people in Phase 1A will still be prioritized for vaccinations, and the state's new plan to be flexible for Phase 1B will ensure maximum efficiency.
According to John Hopkins University data, California has eclipsed 30,000 COVID-19 deaths and has recorded over 2.7 million cases of the novel coronavirus.
As of Monday, over 780,000 doses of vaccines have been administered in California.
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