Another large-scale COVID-19 vaccination site opened in the Southland Friday, the result of a partnership among various health organizations aimed at providing vaccines to particularly vulnerable residents, beginning with those age 75 and over.
The site at Cal Poly Pomona is one of two the consortium established in California, with the second located at Moscone Center in San Francisco.
Organizers said each site will ultimately have the capacity to administer up to 10,000 doses per day, rivaling Los Angeles' mass vaccination site at Dodger Stadium.
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The sites are being operated by a consortium comprising Kaiser Permanente, Adventist Health, the California Medical Association, Dignity Health and Futuro Health, with coordinating assistance from the California Primary Care Association and the American Red Cross.
Although ultimately able to offer up to 10,000 daily shots, limits in vaccine supply will necessitate a much smaller rollout. About 500 people were expected to receive shots at the Pomona site Friday.
Appointments can be made through the state's myturn.ca.gov website.
"We want to acknowledge and thank the state for making additional vaccine available, which has made it possible to open this site for the community and our members," Greg A. Adams, Kaiser Permanente chairman/CEO, said in a statement.
"We are also grateful to the state for providing additional vaccine to allow us to increase our appointments for our members in our medical centers. We have helped form this consortium because our respective organizations recognize that we need to harness our collective efforts to make immediate and meaningful progress toward mass vaccination."
The group intends to open additional sites as vaccine supplies increase. Although the sites will initially focus on people age 75 and older, availability will also expand with the vaccine supply. Organizers said future sites "will be chosen to maximize access, especially for communities with rural populations and people who have historically experienced lower rates of vaccination."
According to Kaiser, the Cal Poly Pomona site covers 145,000 square feet, with 16 check-in stations and four pods, leading to 48 vaccination stations.
"Our health care teams are diligently working to get as many 'shots in-arms' as possible for those most at risk," said Daryn Kumar, president/CEO of Dignity Health's St. Francis Memorial Hospital and St. Mary's Medical Center.
"Despite the extra demands our caregivers have faced over the past year, they are once again responding with enthusiasm to help pave our community's way out of this historic emergency."