Vaccine supply increases in SLO County, Santa Barbara County continues the first vaccination phase

Moderna Vaccine
Posted at 11:14 AM, Dec 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-30 14:17:12-05

More health care workers across the Central Coast are getting COVID-19 vaccines.

The San Luis Obispo County Public Health Department said in a statement Wednesday its vaccine supply tripled this week and now has more than 7,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines available.

This increase in doses means all health care workers who "currently provide direct, in-person clinical care and are not already set up to get the vaccine through their employer or pharmacy partnership" are invited to get an appointment for the vaccine from the Health Department, the statement read.

"This vaccine is critical to protecting our health care workers as COVID-19 surges in our community,” said Dr. Penny Borenstein, San Luis Obispo County Health Officer, in the statement. “This protects them and the people in their care.”

On Monday, San Luis Obispo County expanded vaccine eligibility to include:

  • Specialty care providers (including medical specialties, optometry, chiropractic care, podiatry, and occupational and physical therapy)
  • Laboratory workers
  • Dental practices
  • Pharmacy staff

More than 1,300 local frontline health care workers have been vaccinated in San Luis Obispo County so far, according to the Health Department.

San Luis Obispo County will announce more vaccine distribution priorities in January, with health care workers, essential workers and vulnerable populations set to receive vaccinations in February or March pending supply.

As of Wednesday morning, 17,575 vaccines have arrived in Santa Barbara County, according to the Public Health Department.

It's a near-equal split between Pfizer-BioNTech (8,775) and Moderna vaccines (8,800).

Santa Barbara County is currently in Phase 1A, Tier 1 of its vaccine distribution plan. That group includes:

  • Staff of acute care hospitals, psych, correctional facility hospitals
  • Staff/residents in long term care setting serving older and high risk
  • EMS personnel providing EMS services
  • Dialysis center staff

Vaccinations of Tier 2 (intermediate care facilities, home health/home care workers, community health workers and primary, correctional and urgent care clinics) and Tier 3 (specialty clinics, lab workers, dental and pharmacy) groups in Phase 1A will continue through February 2021.