CBS San Francisco Staff Report

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — With the surge in new coronavirus cases beginning to ease and demand for vaccination growing, the information you need to know is coming fast and furious. Here’s a roundup of the COVID stories we’ve published over the weekend.

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San Francisco Mass Vaccination Sites On Pause As COVID-19 Vaccine Supply Runs Short
SAN FRANCISCO — With demand soaring and the supply of COVID-19 vaccine limited, San Francisco health officials announced Sunday they were pausing operations at the city’s mass vaccination sites located at Moscone Center and City College. Operations at Moscone Center will be shut down starting Monday for at least for a week. City College will be shut down until Friday and then vaccinations will be limited to those needing second doses. “The vaccine supply coming to San Francisco’s healthcare providers and the Department of Public Health is limited, inconsistent, and unpredictable, making vaccine roll out difficult and denying San Franciscans this potentially life-saving intervention,” officials said in Sunday’s announcement. The number of vaccines given out soared over the last week with healthcare providers, pharmacies and the health department all administering shots to San Francisco residents. Read More

Grateful for Vaccination, South Bay Couple Looks Back on Decades of Valentine’s Day Memories
SAN JOSE — The pandemic has turned the world upside down for a lot of people but one couple in the South Bay is taking the long view of history and it’s a history they’ve experienced together. Sunday, the Oakmont Assisted Living community in San Jose was all decked out for Valentines Day. And by offering a second round of vaccination, they were hoping to soon be able to see residents hug family members kept apart for nearly a year now. “That’s the hope,” said Oakmont’s Heather Evans. “Of course, we need to wait for the guidelines. I think all of us are kind of in a standby with that.” One couple holds the Valentine record for the house. Fritz and Marjorie Buell have been married for 67 years and, Sunday, they got their COVID-19 shots to make sure there are even more. Read More

Appointments Open Sunday for Oakland Coliseum Mass COVID-19 Vaccination Site
OAKLAND — Appointments opened on Sunday for COVID-19 vaccinations at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum site for eligible Alameda County residents, officials announced. Residents with priority for the site, which is scheduled to open on Tuesday, include front line workers, long-term care providers, people 65 and older, educators, with registration available online at https://myturn.ca.gov. The location will eventually have the capacity to administer up to 6,000 vaccine doses per day, state officials said earlier this month. The Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District will offer fare-free shuttles to the COVID-19 mass vaccination site and BART is offering a ticket good for a free ride home. The fare-free AC Transit shuttle lines will begin on Monday will operate seven days per week from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Read More

California GOP Pumps $125,000 Into Recall Effort against Gov. Newsom
LOS ANGELES — The California Republican Party announced Saturday it is giving $125,000 to the campaign aimed at recalling Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom.The infusion of cash comes at a critical time for organizers, who are required to collect 1.5 million valid petition signatures by mid-March to qualify the proposal for the ballot. The funds will go toward hiring workers to gather signatures. So far, that work has fallen largely on volunteers, along with mailings sent to households around the state. The funds were donated to Rescue California, one of several political committees working to oust Newsom from office. Newsom’s political advisers call the proposal a misguided effort by supporters of former President Donald Trump and other Republicans. Read More

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Bay Area Distribution Efforts Intensify as COVID Vaccine Eligibility Expands
SANTA CLARA — Following the announcement that California will open up vaccine eligibility to those with health conditions and disabilities on March 15, there are still questions as to how that will actually work. Those questions were the subject of CDC call Saturday. “Does a patient have to come to the clinic with a note from his or her doctor?” wondered Dr. John Swartzberg with the University of California at Berkeley. “I don’t think so. Will we just trust people to be honest? Probably. Will that mean people will game the system? Most certainly. So these are, I think, the things we’re struggling with.” Despite unanswered questions, the expanded vaccine access is clearly great news for those most at risk. It also gives another clue as to how things are unfolding behind the scenes. “They’re starting to get more confidence that the logistics are being worked out,” Swartzberg said. Read More

CDC: Strong Evidence In-Person Schooling Can Be Done Safely
SAN FRANCISCO — Amid a heated San Francisco Bay Area debate between school officials, parents and teachers, the nation’s top public health agency said Friday that in-person schooling can resume safely with masks, social distancing and other strategies. While vaccination of teachers is important, while important, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it was not a prerequisite for reopening. The CDC released its long-awaited road map for getting students back to classrooms in the middle of a pandemic. But its guidance is just that — the agency cannot force schools to reopen, and agency officials were careful to say they are not calling for a mandate that all U.S. schools be reopened. Read More

Year Of The Ox: Bay Area Crowds Gather To Celebrate Lunar New Year Despite COVID-19 Pandemic
SAN JOSE — Communities throughout the Bay Area are celebrating the Lunar New Year despite pleas from public health officials for smaller, safer gatherings as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to rage. “I was surprised that people still came over,” said Dan Phan. He was selling firecrackers at Grand Century Mall in San Jose’s Little Saigon. The city is home to the largest Vietnamese community in the United States. Phan estimated the crowd at the mall, which normally hosts thousands of revelers over the three day holiday, was a tenth of what it was last year. A few minutes away at popular Buddhist temple Chua Duc Vien, the typically elbow-to-elbow crowd was replaced with a socially distant, smaller one. Read More

State Health Officials Say Fitness Trainers Claimed To Be Health Care Workers to Obtain Vaccine
SAN FRANCISCO — A loophole created by California health officials allowed some fitness trainers to get vaccinated against COVID-19, according to state officials. In January, the California Department of Public Health released updated guidelines on vaccination allocation that classified outdoor recreation as health care, the first tier eligible to get the vaccine along with people over 75. Some fitness clubs jumped at the chance of getting their employees vaccinated, KGO-TV reported Thursday. “Outdoor recreation was included in Health Care (Health Care/Public Health sector index 1, line item 22). As such, we shared that information with our employees so they could begin the process of receiving vaccinations,” Annie Appel, Senior Executive Vice President at the Bay Club Company, said in a statement. Read More

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Oakland Schools Now Delivering Meals To Students And Their Families
OAKLAND — The Oakland Unified School District joined the food delivery business this week as district officials announced Friday the district will bring meals to students learning from home. In addition, district staff are delivering produce twice a month and meals for adults. “If DoorDash and Uber Eats can take food to kids, then OUSD can do it, too,” said Irene Reynolds, executive director of OUSD’s Nutrition Services. Each delivery typically contains a week’s worth of food, consisting of seven breakfasts, seven lunches and five dinners for each student and each of their siblings. Read More