LA County coronavirus vaccine allotment continues to increase

LA County coronavirus vaccine allotment continues to increase

Los Angeles County expects to receive 312,000 vaccine doses next week including 53,700 doses of the highly anticipated Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which only requires one dose.

Additional doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine were not expected for several weeks.

The allotment coming next week is the biggest since vaccines began flowing into L.A. County in December. This week, the county received 269,000 doses. The week prior it received 211,000 doses in what have been ever-increasing allocations.

Out of the vaccine coming into L.A. County, 62% or 193,000 doses, will be reserved for those receiving first doses, a welcomed sign for the 1.8 million newly eligible recipients this week including teachers and school staff, childcare providers, food and agriculture workers and emergency service personnel.

“It’s becoming increasingly clear that more vaccine is flowing into the county from direct allocations from the state and federal government,” Simon said. “So the numbers I quote for vaccine supplies are in our network. But as the stats this week indicate, there were many more doses being administered from direct channels.”

As of Friday, L.A. County had administered 2,415,460 doses, representing an increase of more than 460,000 from the week prior. The numbers, which put average doses at roughly 65,000 per day, includes those vaccines administered at a variety of other sites that receive doses directly from federal and state sources.

A week prior, roughly 40,000 doses per day were being administered.

In addition to the county’s more than 400 vaccination sites, there are vaccines delivered in many cases directly to health systems, pharmacies and federally qualified health clinics, officials say. In some cases, the vaccines go directly to mega-pods, one run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, another by Dignity Health System and a third by Kaiser Permanente.

President Joe Biden has set a goal to have all adults who want it vaccinated by May. And L.A. County officials believe they can meet this goal with a current network of providers that have the capacity to administer more than 600,000 doses per week.

At the same time, the county is continuing to see a decline in cases now down to less than 1,000 new cases on average per day and 1,264 people in the hospital with COVID-19. By next Tuesday, the county will likely move into the less restrictive red tier and two weeks later junior highs and high schools would be permitted to open.

“Fortunately we’ve seen a rapid decline in cases more recently,” Simon said. “However more than 30% of those hospitalized with COVID-19 remain on ICU, many on ventilators. The important point is we cannot let this happen again. We can not scale up vaccinations if we are dealing with another surge. With Biden’s announcement that we should ahve enogu vaccinations by end of May we are so close.”

Officials also said Friday that L.A. County would forward on March 15 with guidance from the state to open vaccine eligibility to those with pre-existing conditions or disabilities. But questions remained about how those requirements would be verified.

“Ideally, vaccinations for these people could best be done in the provider settings and then doctors can make the best decision for their patients,” Simon said.

Sign up for The Localist, our daily email newsletter with handpicked stories relevant to where you live. Subscribe here.

Category Latest Posts