Mayor Garcia: Long Beach Residents 16+ Can Receive the COVID-19 Vaccine
Mayor Robert Garcia announced Thursday that Long Beach would be "transitioning" the city's eligibility requirements to allow all residents over the age of 16 to receive the coronavirus vaccine.
Why it matters:
Today's announcement follows Governor Newsom's declaration that the state would open eligibility to everyone 16 and older. Because Long Beach has its own health department, it was able to move quicker in rolling out its vaccine plan.
According to Garcia, about 43 percent of qualifying adults have already received at least one dose, with 86 percent of those 65 and older receiving at least two.
Health and Human Services Director Kelly Colopy said, "we've seen a dramatic decrease since our winter surge," and that in the last 60-days, the city's positivity rate dropped by 78 percent.
How it's going to work:
The vaccine will be available for walk-ins only at the Convention Center, Monday through Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. At least 500 shots would be made available, and those who are in line but are unable to receive one will be scheduled for the next day, Mr. Garcia said.
Long Beach residents will have to wait until April 15 to book appointments due to the state's MyTurn program, based on state requirements, and will not recognize the local eligibility extension.
The Convention Center will provide at least 500 doses for walk-ups per day, and Garcia often said up to 1,000 doses are available.
Colopy said the city would continue to use pop-ups and a bus shuttle service in areas hardest hit by the coronavirus.