San Francisco announced the opening of its third mass vaccination site Tuesday at SF Market in the Bayview just a day after limited supply forced the temporary closure of the other two sites.
The SF Market site, launched in collaboration with The City and Sutter Health, has the capacity to administer up to 1,000 doses per day, but due to a supply shortage, people cannot schedule appointments at the site yet and vaccines will be administered there by invitation only.
The limited supply of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines remains a top concern for an effective vaccination rollout across the nation.
For San Francisco, it is raising questions over whether The City can achieve its previously stated goal of vaccinating everyone by June. Health officials say they have the network of sites in place — they also plan to launch mobile teams — that could vaccinate more than 10,000 daily if they had the supply.
“Of course that’s our goal,” Mayor London Breed told reporters Tuesday. “I am really proud that San Francisco on average has been able to do over 4,000 vaccines a day. If we can get to that 10,000 — we can actually exceed that 10,000 — if we can get there and exceed it then it’s possible. Fingers crossed. Vaccine is not within our control, but as soon as we have them we are going to get them out.”
Gov. Gavin Newsom, speaking Tuesday at the opening of a vaccination site in Los Angeles, said California is receiving about a million doses each week. The last two weeks, the state received 1.08 million; this week it expects to receive 1.28 million and next week 1.31 million, Newsom said.
“The issue at the end of the day is supply,” Newsom said. “We need more Moderna vaccine, more Pfizer vaccine. We need to provide an ample supply so we can plan not just two to three weeks out, but over the course of the next few months.”
“Here is the constraint: Manufactured supply,” Newsom added later. “There’s simply not enough doses being manufactured from Moderna and Pfizer.”
Throughout the state, there have been 6.2 million doses administered as of Tuesday. In San Francisco, 122,420 residents have received their first doses, 16 percent of the population over the age of 16, and 35,764 their second doses.
Newsom has vowed improvement to the state’s distribution of the vaccine it does receive under a state contract with Blue Shield, the terms of which were revealed Monday. The state intends to also sign a similar contract with Kaiser, but those details are not yet out.
Newsom also noted the state has launched a dashboard of who is receiving the vaccine by race and ethnicity “showing that we are not where we need to be” when it comes to the equitable distribution of doses.
San Francisco’s race and ethnicity data shows that Asian Americans have received the most doses to date, at 31.1 percent, followed by White residents at 30.5 percent. Asian Americans make up 34.6 percent of the approximate 764,000 residents over the age of 16 in San Francisco and White residents 42.1 percent.
Black residents received 3.5 percent, or 5,513, of the total 157,556 doses administered and Latinos 8.3 percent. Black residents comprise 4.9 percent of the population of those aged over 16, and Latinos 14.1 percent.
Of the 33,159 diagnosed cases in San Francisco, 41.7 percent of the cases were Latino, 21.4 percent White, 17.6 percent Asian and 5.7 percent Black.
Of the 372 deaths attributed to COVID-19, 38.7 percent were Asian, 27.4 percent White, 20.4 percent Latino and 7.5 percent Black.
The SF Market site is located in San Francisco’s historically Black neighborhoods.
“With this site at the SF Market, we’re bringing access to the vaccine closer to people who live in the Bayview Hunters Point area and the southeast of The City,” Breed said in a statement. “Throughout this pandemic, we’ve made sure our city’s response to COVID-19 is equitable, and we’re continuing that work by locating vaccination sites in the communities that have been hit the hardest.”
On Sunday, city officials announced a setback to their rollout of the vaccine due to a lack of supply.
The City’s first mass vaccination site at City College of San Francisco, operated by University of California San Francisco in partnership with The City, closed on Monday and will reopen Friday for second dose administration only. It’s not clear when it will resume providing first doses. “City College will fully reopen when vaccine supply becomes more available,” The City’s vaccination website reads.
The Moscone Center mass vaccination site, which was launched by Kaiser Permanente in partnership with The City, also has temporarily ceased operations, but is expected to reopen Feb. 22, according to the website.
The City announced last week it would expand the pool of those eligible to receive the vaccine on Feb. 24 to include teachers, child care workers, first responders like police officers and food workers, including those working at grocery stores and restaurants. Those currently eligible are frontline healthcare workers and people 65 and over.
Newly diagnosed cases of COVID-19 continue to trend downwards throughout California. On Jan. 15, the state reported 40,622 new cases compared to 5,692 new cases Tuesday.
There remain, however, concerns about the impacts of several variants of COVID-19 that are known to be more contagious. Two cases of the South African variant were identified in the Bay Area last week, in Santa Clara and Alameda Counties.
The state has identified 189 cases of the United Kingdom variant in California and 1,834 cases of the “West Coast” variants, Newsom said.