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Coronavirus

6 Million vaccine doses administered in L.A. County

Countywide, 711 vaccination sites are open this week and administering Moderna and Pfizer vaccines

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Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health announced Monday that more than 6,000,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to people across Los Angeles County.

Of these, 4,080,126 were first doses and 2,239,672 were second doses. Over 4 million people have some additional protection against COVID-19 and over 2 million people are fully protected. More than 70% of L.A. County residents 65 and older received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Countywide, 711 vaccination sites are open this week and administering Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, including two new sites in Palmdale and Santa Clarita, the Palmdale Oasis Park Recreation Center and the College of the Canyons. There are still appointments available at these sites for this week. 

Since the CDC and FDA announced the pause on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine’s administration on April 13, 70% of Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses have been replaced with Pfizer and Moderna doses.

There may be an announcement at the end of this week about the vaccine’s safety from the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.  L.A. County will follow the CDC and FDA directives on when it is safe to resume administration of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The CDC announced last week that about 5,800 breakthrough infections have been identified nationwide out of 77 million fully vaccinated people; this means that about 1 out of every 10,000 people vaccinated test positive for the virus.

Among individuals fully vaccinated, less than 1 in a million have died. Currently, across the US, about 1 in every 56 people infected with COVID-19 have passed away from their infections. Before vaccines were available, about 1.8% of people who were infected with COVID-19 died of their infections.

If extrapolated these findings to L.A. County, and everyone in the county was fully vaccinated, the County would have only 753 breakthrough COVID-19 infections and 8 deaths. This is why getting everyone vaccinated is so important.

 “We in Los Angeles are in a good place right now – and we have an opportunity to chart a different course from the one we’re seeing play out in other parts of the country,” said Barbara Ferrer, Director of Public Health.

“But we can only do it together. We know how well a simple mask works to protect both children and adults, and how critically important it is for each of us to do our part to protect each other by getting vaccinated as soon as we are able to. There’s never been more proof of how important it is for us to take care of each other, especially now that so many of us are getting back to work and school,” she added.

Over the past few weeks, many L.A. County schools began a staged reopening. Currently, 77% of public school districts are open, as are 43% of private and charter schools; this means that more than 1,600 schools are open for in-classroom instruction.

An additional 5 public school districts and 113 private and charter schools have approved plans to reopen. On random site visits from the Public Health Schools Technical Assistance Team, school compliance with Public Health safety protocols was very high: half of all schools had perfect compliance, while an additional 45% had higher than 80% compliance.

From the beginning of the school year through April 15, the County has seen only a handful of outbreaks in schools since the surge. All of the five active outbreaks in L.A. County schools that are currently under investigation are associated with participation in youth sports – not with attending instructional school.

“We know that masking and distancing are a challenge in sports, and that socializing during these activities off-school-campus could be a factor in viral transmission among these groups.  That’s why it’s important for young people 16 and 17 to get a COVID-19 vaccine,” said Ferrer.

The data indicates three things: The tools deployed in safety protocols at schools are incredibly powerful, even though they’re fairly simple, masking and social distancing really work.

Second, when it comes to COVID-19, students have good protection as long as safety protocols are followed.

And lastly, COVID-19 transmission in school staff is driven not so much by their exposure to the infection at school, but primarily by exposure in the community. Whenever community transmission rates were high, there were more cases at schools.

LAUSD returns (Screenshot via KABC7)

Teens 16 and older are now eligible for vaccinations and can be vaccinated at any site that administers Pfizer vaccines. This includes many county and city run mass vaccination sites and hundreds of pharmacies, community vaccination events, and health clinics, including those affiliated with major health systems like Kaiser, UCLA Health, and federally qualified health clinics. Teens 16 and 17 will need to need to be accompanied to their vaccination appointment with a legal guardian who can give consent.

Everyone living or working in L.A. County 16 and older is eligible for COVID-19 vaccine. To learn how to make an appointment, what verifications patients will need to show at your vaccination appointment, and much more, visit: www.VaccinateLACounty.com (English) and www.VacunateLosAngeles.com  (Spanish). If you don’t have internet access, can’t use a computer, or you’re over 65, you can call 1-833-540-0473 for help finding an appointment. Please know there may be an extended wait time to speak with an operator for help making an appointment due to high demand. Vaccinations are always free and open to eligible residents and workers regardless of immigration status.

Kaiser Permanente is offering vaccine appointments at all of their facilities, whether you are a member or not. Call 1-833-KP4CARE or visit their website at KP.org/covidvaccine to make an appointment.

 

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California unveils digital COVID-19 vaccination records

Californians will enter into a state-owned website their name, date of birth and email or phone associated with their vaccine records

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Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles

SACRAMENTO – Officials announced Friday that the state is providing Californians with a newly created way to access their coronavirus vaccination records in a digital format.

Dr. Erica Pan, the state’s epidemiologist told reporters the new tool allows residents access to their COVID-19 vaccination records from the state’s immunization registry and includes the same information as the paper cards issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To access the information, Californians will enter into a state-owned website their name, date of birth and email or phone associated with their vaccine records and they will be asked to create a four-digit PIN. The record will include a QR code that users can save to their mobile phones.

With nearly 20 million people fully vaccinated in California and proof of vaccination already required in some circumstances such as travel, state health officials felt there would be demand for the tool, though it remains optional, Pan noted.

“The odds are someone is going to misplace their paper CDC card and a digital COVID-19 vaccine record provides a convenient backup,” she told reporters.

 Amy Tong, director of the state’s department of technology told reporters that businesses that use a QR scanner would see the same information as residents — their name, birthdates and vaccination details, she said. She added that businesses would not be able to store that data for future use.

The system is accessible through myvaccinerecord.cdph.ca.gov. Governor Gavin Newsom has said the digital version wouldn’t be a “passport” or a requirement.

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LA Public Health emphasizes vaccinations as pandemic guidelines relax

The County will also follow the State on lifting current travel restrictions on June 15 to align with CDC travel recommendations

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Photo Credit: County of Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES – On June 15, the state of California will be lifting most capacity limits and distancing restrictions at businesses, and Los Angeles County will align with the State in order to allow businesses to fully re-open. Specific requirements will continue for large capacity events, schools, day cares, day camps, high-risk congregant settings and health care facilities.

The County remains in the least restrictive yellow tier in the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy framework.

The County will also follow the State on lifting current travel restrictions on June 15 to align with CDC travel recommendations. Businesses must comply with all Cal/OSHA requirements at worksites past the June 15 reopening.

Tuesday, the State released the final blueprint tier numbers before the Blueprint for a Safer Economy program is retired next week; L.A. County’s adjusted case rate remains at 0.7 new cases per 100,000 people, and the overall test positivity rate remains at 0.4% across the county and in areas with the fewest health affirming resources.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health will host a Virtual Town Hall on Reopening on Thursday, June 10, at 6:00 p.m. Join the town hall to get the latest updates on the June 15 reopening of Los Angeles County. The town hall will be streamed live on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube @lapublichealth. For more information and to submit a question, visit: tinyurl.com/AskReopeningTownHall

Public Health confirmed 13 new deaths and 186 new cases of COVID-19. Of the 13 new deaths reported Tuesday, three people that passed away were over the age of 80, six people who died were between the ages of 65 and 79 and four people who died were between the ages of 50 and 64.

To date, Public Health identified 1,245,412 positive cases of COVID-19 across all areas of L.A. County and a total of 24,404 deaths. There are 232 people with COVID-19 currently hospitalized and 16% of these people are in the ICU.

“As California reopens and most physical distancing requirements and capacity limits are lifted a week from today, it’s very important that those not vaccinated continue to take precautions,” said Barbara Ferrer, Director of Public Health.

“While we are making great progress with vaccinations in the County with 54% of L.A. County residents 16 and over fully vaccinated and 65 percent having received one dose of the vaccine, there are millions of residents who do not have protection from COVID-19. For those not yet vaccinated, and the over 1.3 million children under 12 years old, wearing a face covering remains important for preventing transmission.”

Free COVID-19 vaccines are available for everyone age 12 and older. You do not need to have health insurance and you will not be asked about your immigration status. Vaccines are offered at hundreds of locations across L.A. County. These include clinics, hospitals, pharmacies, places of worship, and mobile clinics. Many sites are open late and on weekends and no appointment needed at many locations.

To find a vaccination site near you, to make an appointment at vaccination sites, and much more, visit: www.VaccinateLACounty.com (English) and www.VacunateLosAngeles.com (Spanish). If you don’t have internet access, can’t use a computer, or you’re over 65, you can call 1-833-540-0473 for help finding an appointment, connecting to free transportation to and from a vaccination site, or scheduling a home-visit if you are homebound. Vaccinations are always free and open to eligible residents and workers regardless of immigration status.

With 12-17 year olds now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, providing accurate and important information to teens is critical. Public Health participated in a COVID Vaccine Teen Forum and helped answer some of the most popular questions from Los Angeles County teens themselves, ranging from vaccine safety to how they can talk to their parents about getting the vaccine. The forum can be seen at the following link: https://youtu.be/U7U5VnckkP0.

Through Thursday, June 10, everyone 18 and older coming to get their first vaccine or who brings a first-time vaccine recipient with them to their second dose appointment at County-run vaccination sites, L.A. City and St. John’s Well Child and Family Center sites, will have an opportunity to win a pair of season tickets to the 2021-2022 home season of either the LA Football Club soccer team or the LA Dodgers. Official rules and participating site locations can be found on the Los Angeles County Vaccination Sweepstakes page online.

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Coronavirus

Newsom; “Vax for the Win” and LA sports teams also enter vax push

The incentives aim to give an extra nudge to those who still need to get vaccinated, especially in hard-to-reach communities

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California Governor Gavin Newsom appearing on Jimmy Kimmel Live Thursday (Screenshot via YouTube)

SACRAMENTO – California Governor Gavin Newsom announced a multi-million dollar vaccine incentive program Thursday to motivate more people to get vaccinated leading up to June 15, when the state economy is slated to fully reopen. The $116.5 million vaccine incentive program is the largest in the nation to boost vaccinations as the state prepares to fully reopen the economy June 15.

The incentives aim to give an extra nudge to those who still need to get vaccinated against COVID-19, especially those in hard-to-reach communities, while also thanking everyone who has already been vaccinated.

More than 62.8 percent of Californians aged 12+ are at least partially vaccinated, but an estimated 12 million people who are eligible still have not gotten a vaccine to protect their health and the well-being of their communities.

“Getting every eligible Californian vaccinated is how we bring our state roaring back from this pandemic,” said the Governor. “California has already made incredible progress in the fight against COVID-19, with the lowest case rates in the country, while administering millions more vaccines than any other state. But we aren’t stopping there, we’re doing everything it takes to get Californians vaccinated as we approach June 15 to help us fully reopen safely.”

California residents who have been vaccinated are already entered for cash prizes, and those who haven’t been can get inoculated for the chance to receive a $50 card and win cash prizes. “You don’t have to register to do this as is the case in other states,” Newsom said. “You’re automatically registered.”

Beginning on May 27, the next two million people who begin and complete their COVID-19 vaccination will automatically be eligible to receive a $50 prepaid or grocery card, worth a total of $100 million. It gives them the option to select from a $50 Virtual Prepaid Card (which can be spent online, in-store where major debit cards are accepted, or added to a mobile wallet to be used to shop in stores that accept mobile wallets), or a $50 grocery gift card from Kroger (which includes Ralphs, Food 4 Less and Foods Co.) or Albertsons (which includes Safeway, Albertsons, Vons, Pavilions and Andronico’s Community Markets), while supplies last.

Californians will receive a text message with an electronic prepaid card redemption code sent to their mobile phone or email address 7-10 days after their two-dose series of Pfizer or Moderna, or single dose of Johnson and Johnson. An incentive card will be held for those who start their vaccination at the launch of the program.

Those who do not have a mobile phone or email address can receive a physical card by calling 1-833-993-3873, 7-10 days after receiving their final dose. Those without a permanent address can also call to coordinate delivery.

For more information, visit COVID19.ca.gov/vax-for-the-win. To schedule an appointment to be vaccinated, visit MyTurn.ca.gov or call the CA COVID-19 Hotline at 1-833-422-4255.

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health Launches Vaccination Sweepstakes with Los Angeles Kings and Los Angeles Galaxy

In Los Angeles County, starting tomorrow, Friday, May 28, two Los Angeles County residents 18 and older who get their first vaccine or bring a person needing their first vaccine to their second dose appointment can enter to win a pair (2) of 2021-22 season tickets to the Los Angeles Kings or 2022 season tickets to the Los Angeles Galaxy.

The vaccination sweepstakes will run from Friday, May 28 to Thursday, June 3. Two residents will be awarded prizes.

Residents can book appointments or walk in to County, LA City, and St. John’s Well Child and Family clinic vaccination sites to enter.

For more information, including official rules and participating site locations, residents can visit the Los Angeles County Vaccination Sweepstakes page at: www.publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/vaccine/sweepstakes.htm

Must be a Los Angeles County resident 18 years or older to enter.

Related: Jimmy Kimmel- ‘GOP Throws Out MyPillow Mike, Trump’s Crazy Memorial Day Message & Governor Gavin Newsom Sneaks In’

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