State teams up with Walgreens, CVS to distribute vaccines

Gov. Gavin Newsom watches as the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid vaccine is prepared by Director of Inpatient Pharmacy David Cheng at Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center in on Dec. 14. AP photo by Jae C. Hong.

The state of California has formed a partnership with CVS and Walgreens to provide coronavirus vaccinations to long-term care facility residents and employees, Gov. Gavin Newsom said today (Dec. 28).

CVS and Walgreens will provide vaccine doses from Pfizer to residents and employees in nursing homes and assisted living centers.

According to Newsom, CVS will provide vaccines to around 500 nursing homes while Walgreens will do so at roughly 350 nursing homes over the next three-to-four weeks.

“By leveraging CVS and Walgreens resources, we can effectively deploy vaccines to residents and staff at our long-term care facilities, which are at higher risk of Covid transmission — and do it at no cost to the state or local government,” Newsom said in a statement.

First-priority recipients

Residents and employees in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are among the first in the state to receive the vaccine along with front-line health care workers, in-home health care workers, primary care clinic workers, laboratory workers, dental health clinic employees and pharmacy staff.

According to Newsom, the state’s task force overseeing the vaccine distribution schedule is expected to approve as soon as Wednesday the next groups that will have access to the vaccine.

People over age 75 or age 65 if they have underlying health conditions, workers in education and childcare, emergency services, food and agriculture, transportation and logistics, manufacturing and the industrial, residential and commercial sectors are all expected to begin receiving the vaccine in January on the current schedule.

Homeless, prisoners to get vaccine

In addition, the homeless and prisoners will be among the next pool of people with access to the vaccine before they get to healthy Californians.

The state also expects to receive fewer vaccines than it had originally planned for by the end of the year, Newsom said, with only around 1.8 million doses from Pfizer and the biotechnology company Moderna expected to arrive in California by the end of the week.

The state had originally planned for as many as 2.2 million doses from the two companies.

“It’s not a point of criticism,” Newsom said. “I still think it’s an extraordinary success story.”

Even with the vaccine rollout, Newsom and state Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said they expect both January and February to be “challenging” given how widespread the virus currently is within the state.

The statewide test positivity rate is now up to 12.5%, according to Newsom, despite California reporting results from more than 300,000 tests per day on average over the last seven days.

Hospitalizations increase

In addition, hospitalizations and intensive care unit admissions continue to climb, which is likely to necessitate an extension of the state’s regional stay-at-home order later into January for most of California, including the Bay Area.

The surge is likely to be exacerbated by holiday-related travel, Ghaly said.

“We really hope that as we enter one of these last worrying periods for the foreseeable future with New Year’s that people do make the decision to stay local, stay at home, don’t mix outside of their households,” Ghaly said.

“Everything that we’re seeing today is that things that were a month ago or two months ago a low-risk activity, today, are really high risks because of the level of COVID that’s circulating in our communities,” he added. — Bay City News


  1. It’s interesting how, for the second time, a “three week lockdown” is extended past three weeks by the governor and Dr. Cody. It’s like they get a taste of the power to rule people’s lives and they can’t let go of the control switch. The death rate is now far below what they and the scaremonger media were screaming about earlier this year. They don’t talk about that. They also don’t mention that Medicare (Medi-cal) pays hospitals a premium on reimbursements for COVID cases, so every patient who arrives at the hospital is tested for COVID. If you die in a car accident or from a suicide, and they find out after your death that you had COVID, that means extra money for the hospital. So, by all means Mr. Governor and Dr. Cody, keep this thing going. Doesn’t matter how many local businesses you destroy or how many jobs you eliminate. No, what matters is that you have power.

  2. They won’t reopen our schools, yet the governor has time for dinner with his best lobbyist buddies at the French Laundry. Something is really wrong in this state.

  3. This has nothing to do with your health. This is about a world government taking away your Constitutional rights. COVID is a communist Chinese bio-weapon, and the vaccine is the coup de grace.

    • Tony, Ambrose, and Anonymous: Are poor little kool-aid drinking,dtrumpf-following anti-Democratic citizens or trolls of the Bay Area – who in a desperate need to feel relevant,have ignored truth & sown hatred & divisions, when we should be pulling together as a Country and supporting each other. Instead, the greed for the almighty dollar has been used by our Country’s enemies to lead a substantial percent of Americans into lapdog loyalty to a Facist, narcissistic sociopath.

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