January 25, 2021 1:00 PM
by Lindsay B. Call
Santa Monica’s health and safety is our top priority. The City of Santa Monica is working every day to secure as many COVID-19 vaccines as possible for our community. There are supply and logistic challenges across the nation, but we are in close collaboration with federal, state, and local partners to advocate for local vaccine availability, and the City is actively working with the LA County Department of Public Health to establish a local vaccination site in Santa Monica that we expect to officially announce very soon.
We are approaching one year since the start of the COVID-19 public health crisis, and during this year we have faced many challenges accompanying this deadly disease. Los Angeles County continues to be one of the hardest hit communities in the United States with more than one million cases and 14,000 deaths, but there is hope.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Emergency Use Authorizations (EUA) for two COVID-19 vaccines which have been shown to be safe and effective as determined by data from the manufacturers and findings from large clinical trials. More vaccines are expected to be approved in the coming weeks.
Here is what we know from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and our partners at the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (DPH) who will oversee the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.
- The COVID-19 vaccine is a safe and effective way to prevent the disease. Vaccines save millions of lives each year. When our community gets vaccinated, we aren’t just protecting ourselves, but also those around us. For more information to frequently asked questions about the vaccine, click here.
- The U.S. vaccine safety system ensures that all vaccines are as safe as possible. Safety is a top priority while federal partners work to make this and other COVID-19 vaccines available. For more information about COVID-19 vaccine safety, clinical trials, and vaccine safety monitoring systems, click here.
- COVID-19 vaccines help our bodies develop immunity to the virus that causes COVID-19 without us having to get the illness. To better understand how COVID-19 vaccines work, it helps to first look at how our bodies fight illness. Visit the CDC’s Coronavirus website for a deep dive into how the immune system works and ultimately builds up a defense against COVID-19.
The City is working closely with our partners at the LA Department of Public Health as well as local healthcare providers and pharmacies to get vaccines out to as many people as possible in safe and convenient ways. Phases and tiers have been established by the LA Department of Public Health to prioritize how vaccinations will roll out to different audiences.
COVID-19 vaccinations are currently available by appointment for:
- Healthcare workers (Phase 1A)
- Residents and staff at long-term care facilities (Phase 1A)
- LA County residents 65 years and older (Phase 1B – Tier 1)
If you are a healthcare worker (Phase 1A), resident or staff at long-term care facilities (Phase 1A), or an LA County resident 65 years and older (Phase 1B – Tier 1), you are eligible to make a vaccine appointment now at vaccinatelacounty.com. Be assured that soon more Santa Monicans will become eligible based on job and health risk. To determine when you will be eligible to receive the vaccine and to make appointments, visit MyTurn.ca.gov. For the latest updates on the COVID-19 vaccine in LA County, subscribe to LA County’s Vaccine Newsletter.
With undertaking such a large vaccination effort, there are challenges to overcome. Right now, there is limited vaccine availability in LA County and there are logistics to sort…