Northern California vaccine delivery
Roseville, CA- After 9 long months of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are encouraged by the approval of vaccines which will serve as vital tools for controlling and eventually ending this public health crisis that has caused so much loss, pain, and disruption around the world. Our goal is to vaccinate people as quickly as possible, following the criteria set forth by national and state public health officials, and as supplies allow.
We anticipate the delivery of the first doses of vaccine to our Kaiser Permanente Northern California medical centers beginning on Wednesday and Thursday, (this may be subject to change). We have preparations in place to begin vaccinating our frontline health care workers once the vaccine is available.
Very limited to start
We expect the initial allocations to be very limited, and we are working to ensure an equitable distribution based on those health care workers in areas with highest risk for exposure. When we receive our vaccine allocations for health care workers, we are prepared to move quickly to vaccinate groups at greatest risk, as required by public health agencies, and based on our infectious disease leaders’ review of clinical evidence.
CDC and state guidelines have identified health care workers determined to be at greatest risk, along with residents of nursing homes and long-term care facilities, as groups to receive the first vaccinations. The initial vaccine distribution, which is expected this week, will be under the authority of county public health officials, who will allocate doses to Kaiser Permanente and other approved health care providers.
As supplies become more plentiful, we will vaccinate more health care workers, prioritized by their roles, patient-facing and employee-facing activities, and risk of exposure.
Even as the vaccine is beginning to be provided to people in our communities, it is still critical for everyone to keep using all available methods to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, such as the wearing of masks, appropriate physical distancing, and frequent hand washing. We are committed to educating our members, workforce, customers, and communities about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine and to promote understanding of how a vaccine – coupled with continued public health measures- can help control and ultimately bring about the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Michelle Gaskill-Hames, Senior Vice President, Health Plan and Hospital Operations, Kaiser Permanente Northern California