NAPA (KPIX) – Napa County is looking into turning its fairgrounds into pop-up vaccination sites. In order to do that, they need volunteers so Napa County is asking its residents to step up once again.
“We urge everyone capable for volunteering to do so,” said Supervisor Diane Dillon, the chair of Napa County’s Board of Supervisors. “We’ll find a role for you.”
Supervisor Dillon says volunteers answered the call to help with COVID-19 testing. Now, the county hopes it will get a similar response to get the upper hand on the pandemic as vaccinations shift from frontline workers at hospitals to the public.
“We want to get it done as soon as we can so everyone pitching in sooner rather than later will get us back to that normal that we all desire,” Dillon said.
She estimates mass vaccination is at least a couple of months away but Napa County wants to train its volunteers now as part of the Medical Reserve Corps program. New to the list of those who can administer vaccines are dentists, thanks to an emergency waiver approved by California on Monday.
“I think a lot of the dentists have this idea of needing to be part of the solution,” said Dr. Natasha Lee who practices general dentistry.
Dr. Lee has her own practice and also teaches at the University of Pacific School of Dentistry. She says the California Dental Association has been preparing for this possibility since the pandemic began. Dentists will be deployed to pop-up sites or dental schools that have storage and adequate refrigeration for the vaccines.
“I think that the sooner we can get this pandemic past us by all working together, the better off we’re all going to be,” adds Lee. “And I think we’re going to have a lot of people step up and do their part.”
Dentists already know how to administer shots but their training will be based on learning more about the vaccine and its possible side effects.