Coronavirus: Vaccine Tracker

California expands vaccine eligibility to everyone 16+

California

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) — California expanded COVID-19 vaccine eligibility statewide on Thursday to everyone 16 and older.

This will be a first for some counties in the Bay Area like San Mateo.

The state’s MyTurn website has been working to fix any glitches and make things run more smoothly.

Its latest version went live late Wednesday night. But just because you’re eligible, doesn’t mean you’ll necessarily get an appointment right away as supply remains limited.

As California expands its COVID-19 vaccine eligibility on Thursday to everyone 16 and older, the state’s department of health is launching a new version of its MyTurn website to handle the heavy traffic expected in the coming days.

They say the website will be able to handle up to 300,000 transactions per hour.

“Currently within MyTurn, we’re operating at over 100,000 shots per day. We’re looking at 3.1 million vaccinations delivered through MyTurn proper, again this will be the providers and clinics that are run within my turn and also we have a projection of over 120,000 vaccinations per week. We think that’s conservative with the opening of 16+. We think we’ll see more than that and we have more than enough capacity within system to manage that.”

The department of health says it’s made incremental improvements to the website every couple of weeks. So as people try to sign up on Thursday, they’ll mainly only notice a smoother registration process.

But as counties like San Mateo expand eligibility, its COVID-19 vaccination branch chief, Dr. Anand Chabra, reminds us that initially — not everyone will get an appointment.

“The main thing is that there will be a lot of people, a lot of additional people eligible to get a vaccine and trying to get a vaccinated and the supply hasn’t changed since today and it won’t change tomorrow,” Dr. Chabra said. “So that recognition that it might take a bit of time so remain patient but please be persistent.”

Dr. Chabra stresses to also search for appointments through your local health providers or pharmacies like CVS who are not yet integrated into the MyTurn system.

“We’re working with CVS to get them to onboard to MyTurn so presently you’d have to go to CVS but there are others who are onboarding,” Dr. Chabra said.

While providers like Kaiser Permanente in South San Francisco are integrated into the MyTurn system, the California Department of Health says it’s still working to get other federal partners, as well as smaller healthcare providers, on board and into the system.

No timeline for when that might happen, so again your best bet is to try booking appointments through all avenues.

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