MARIN COUNTY (CBS SF) — Marin County health officials have announced that starting Monday, residents age 65 and older will be eligible to register to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
Marin County Public Health has worked with health care providers to focus on an immunization program for those 75 and older since January 21 in a joint strategy designed to protect those most at risk to COVID-19, health officials said. Approximately three-quarters of Marin’s COVID-19 deaths have been in that age group.READ MORE: UPDATE: Victim, Suspect Identified In Fatal Oakland Park Shooting in Front of Children
According to Marin County Public Health Officer Dr. Matt Willis, enough progress has been made immunizing that older group of residents thanks to that effort to warrant opening vaccinations to the next age-group tier.
“We’ve vaccinated 60% of our residents age 75 and older,” Willis said in a press release. “We’re ready to join other Bay Area counties that have expanded to the next highest-risk group, or residents over age 65.”
According to health officials, 92% of Marin County deaths from COVID-19 have been among residents age 65 and older.
To help Marin residents track when they may be eligible to receive a vaccine, the County has offered an online interest form. Residents can answer a few questions to be subscribed to receive email, text message, or pre-recorded phone call notifications when their turn has arrived and how to pursue a vaccine appointment. The form is available in English, Spanish, Vietnamese and Chinese on Marin County Public Health’s vaccine webpage.READ MORE: COVID: Youth, Adult Multi-Team Sports Can Resume In Alameda Co., Berkeley
To date, health officials said approximately 36,000 Marin residents have received at least one dose of vaccine, in addition to thousands more Marin-based health care workers who live in other counties but help care for Marin residents.
Vaccinations will continue for any remaining Phase 1A-eligible health care workers, first responders, residents of long-term care facilities and those 75 and older, the county health department said. Once someone is eligible to be immunized against COVID-19, they remain eligible even as additional groups become qualified to access the vaccine.
Officials noted that in Marin County as elsewhere in the Bay Area, regional health departments remain challenged by limited supplies of vaccination dosages available to distribute. Supply continues to determine the pace at which residents can be vaccinated.
Officials noted that some health care providers are continuing their 75 and older focus through February, and it may take several weeks until individuals in the 65-74 age group can access a vaccine appointment.MORE NEWS: UPDATE: Missing San Francisco Girl Found Safe In Pittsburg With Michigan Runaway
“We’re allowing providers to focus on the needs of their patients, and so Kaiser Permanente will continue to prioritize the 75 and older population at this time,” Willis said. “Given the large number of patients they have in this age range, we agree with this approach.”