Moderna vaccine

A healthcare worker receives the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the United Memorial Medical Center on December 21, 2020, in Houston. (Go Nakamura/Getty Images/TNS)

An update to California's COVID-19 vaccination plan expands the eligibility of more than 10,000 residents in Calaveras County, though their public health office has warned they do not have enough supply to meet potential demand.

"While we appreciate the state’s shared interest in vaccinating our most vulnerable populations, the unfortunate reality is that the state has not sent us sufficient supply to vaccinate our community members. We hope that changes soon and promise to continue communicating with our community when we are able to begin scheduling vaccination clinics," the Calaveras County Public Health Office said in a press release.

The press release said the modification would allow people age 65 and older into Phase 1B, Tier 1, an additional 10,000 people in Calaveras County from the people who would be included in Phase 1B.

At this time Calaveras County Public Health has “a few hundred” vaccine doses available. They expect 100 more doses next week.

On Tuesday interim Calaveras County Health and Human Services Agency director Sam Leach said the county would begin COVID-19 vaccinations for people who are 75 and older beginning next week in accordance with the previous parameters for Phase 1B, Tier 1.

Tuolumne County Public Health has not released a timetable for vaccinating individuals within the Phase 1B, Tier 1 timetable.

An update from the Tuolumne County Public Health Department was not available as of Wednesday afternoon.

As of Tuesday, Calaveras County had administered 580 vaccine doses. 

A federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration data tracker showed Wednesday that California had administered 891,4890 doses out of 3.43 million as of Tuesday afternoon. California remained near the bottom of other US states and territories of a metric accounted by the CDC, vaccinations per 100,000 in population.

"As of January 13, California has 2,781,039 confirmed cases of COVID-19, resulting in 31,102 deaths. The number of COVID-related deaths increased by 1.9 percent from the prior day total of 30,513," a state COVID-19 dashboard said.

As of Wednesday afternoon, there were 22.74 million confirmed cases and contributed to the deaths of more than 379,255 deaths in the United States, according to the CDC.

As of Tuesday evening, Tuolumne County had counted 3,251 total cases of coronavirus since early this year, with 2,076 community cases, 1,175 inmate cases, and 36 deaths.

The announcement of the expansion to individuals 65 and older was made Wednesday by the state.

Phase 1A included about 3 million people and was made up of healthcare works and long-term care residents. People in 1A are still eligible to receive the vaccine.

The 1B Tier 1 group also includes people at risk of exposure at work in the fields of education, childcare, emergency services and food and agriculture.

Tuolumne County Interim Health Officer Eric Sergienko previously told The Union Democrat the next rollout would likely begin with public safety employees.

1B Tier 2 expands to other occupational sectors such as transportation and logistics; iIndustrial, commercial, residential, and sheltering facilities and services; critical manufacturing and the incarcerated and homeless.

1C will expand the age eligibility and also provide for other occupations.

California is attempting to speed the rollout after falling behind other states. They plan to set up a public notification system when the vaccine is available, allow mass vaccinations at fairgrounds, stadiums and other locations, and provide the vaccine to doctors and pharmacys when more become available.

The FDA has approved two RNA vaccines produced by multinational pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Moderna.

According to the CDC, 25 million doses had been delivered nationwide, but under nine million shots were administered. The Trump administration had promised 50 million doses by the end of January through Operation Warp Speed, its vaccination program.

Contact Giuseppe Ricapito at or (209) 588-4526.

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