SAN FRANCISCO—On the morning of January 15, San Francisco Mayor London Breed announced a plan to create a network of vaccination sites with the goal of administering 10,000 vaccinations a day, given the current limited supply of the FDA-approved Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, and confusion from the general public on where and how to get vaccinated. Considering that the vaccines are being distributed by a number of sources, the logistics are complicated. The first of such sites opened at the City College of San Francisco.
“No one wants to open the city more than I do, and today, I am proud to announce, that we have a plan to work with our private healthcare providers to create a network of vaccination sites in San Francisco, including three large sites that will allow us to quickly to vaccinate people once we have the supply to do so,” Mayor Breed said.
The large sites are are located at these three areas:
- SoMa: Moscone Center.
- OMI/Sunnyside: City College of San Francisco (Main Campus).
- Bayview: The SF Market (San Francisco Wholesale Produce Market).
The first of these three vaccination sites opened at the City College of San Francisco on January 22, 2021. Mayor Breed said the site is starting with a capacity of 500 doses per day. The site was opened in a partnership between UCSF and the City of San Francisco. Due to lack of vaccine supply, this site is by appointment only, said the San Francisco Department of Emergency Management.
“This is a historic and hopeful moment for all of us,” San Francisco Health Director Grant Colfax said. “We have been planning for months now to be ready to vaccinate as many people as fast as possible when the vaccine is more readily available from the federal and state government.”
Breed predicted that the city would be out of vaccines by Thursday. On January 19, 2021, she announced on Twitter an opportunity for San Francisco residents to be notified once they are eligible to be vaccinated, given the very limited supply. It could take months to receive a notification via text or email. To register, visit sf.gov/vaccinenotify.
The City of San Francisco also launched the COVID-19 vaccination data dashboard, which is updated daily at 9 a.m. As of 9 a.m. January 19, 31,189 people in San Francisco were vaccinated with at least one dose. An estimated 3.6% of San Francisco’s estimated population of 870,044 received the first dose. 7,128 people received the second dose.
Supervisor Matt Haney expressed approval of the plan for three vaccination sites, as well as other measures to make tracking the vaccine distribution easier for the general public.
As of January 19, 2021, the City of San Francisco, currently in phase 1A, has received 102,825 doses of the COVID vaccines, according to the Office of the Mayor. There are 210,000 people in the City of San Francisco in phase 1A of the CDC’s phased distribution schedule eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination, including healthcare workers, in-home care workers, and people aged 65 or older. The 210,000 people of San Francisco included in phase 1A are 80,000-90,000 healthcare workers, 11,000 in-home care workers, and 110,000 people aged 65 are older.
The sites will be created to scale-up capacity as vaccine supply increases. Once the vaccination sites are fully operational, pending vaccine supply, the city will gradually move towards the goal of “facilitating 10,000 vaccine doses per day,” according to the San Francisco Office of the Mayor press release.
Aware of public confusion over where and how to get the COVID vaccine, Mayor Breed said, “We know in a pandemic, confusion is a huge problem, and clarity is essential. People are tired and scared, and they just want to know how they can get the vaccine. That is why we are with our private partners to create a network of sites, so that they can bring all of these different groups and efforts together.”
Healthcare providers partnering with the City of San Francisco to distribute and administer vaccines include Kaiser Permanente, UCSF Health, Dignity Health, Sutter Health, California Pacific Medical Center, and the Department of Public Health. Pharmacies at Walgreens and Safeway are also partnering with the city to distribute vaccines.
The Department of Public Health is in charge of distributing doses of the COVID vaccines to workers in city-run hospitals such as San Francisco General and Laguna Honda, “the largest skilled-nursing facility in the country.” The Laguna Honda nursing home’s staff and residents were also vaccinated by Walgreens staff through the federal pharmacy program.