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Governor announces opening of first FEMA vaccination sites 


Sites will serve as the pilot project for federal efforts to open similar vaccination sites nationwide

–California Governor Gavin Newsom and the federal government on Tuesday announced the opening of the nation’s first community vaccination sites in Oakland and Los Angeles.

These pilot sites at the Oakland-Alameda Coliseum and California State University, Los Angeles opened their gates as part of the wider effort to establish a series of vaccination sites nationwide to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

“These new sites will help us get lifesaving vaccines to some of the California communities most in need,” said Governor Newsom. “I thank the Biden-Harris Administration for standing with us as we continue our efforts to safely, swiftly and equitably vaccinate all Californians.”

“FEMA is proud to partner with the state of California and the Department of Defense in opening the first of these pilot community vaccination sites,” said Acting FEMA Administrator Bob Fenton. “These sites demonstrate how we can provide more opportunities for vaccination to the hardest hit communities and ensure everyone who wants a vaccine can get one.”

“Defense Secretary Austin has made clear we must move further and faster to eradicate the devastating effects of the coronavirus,” said Gen. Glen VanHerck, Commander of U.S. Northern Command. “Our military medical providers have supported California in numerous hospitals across the state and we are proud to partner with you in this state-led and federally supported Vaccination Center.”

Registration for vaccine appointments at these two sites will be available through visiting the state’s My Turn website or by calling 833-422-4255.

Members of the public may check their eligibility for vaccination, sign up for notifications and schedule appointments in select areas through the website.

The sites are co-run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the State of California through the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES). FEMA and the Department of Defense are providing resources and federal staffing support to establish these new community vaccination centers as well as operational support.

The two locations chosen for these efforts are in some of the most diverse and socioeconomically challenged communities in the country. The goal of establishing these joint federal pilot sites is to continue to expand the rate of vaccinations in California in an efficient, effective and equitable manner, with an explicit focus on making sure that communities with a high risk of COVID-19 exposure and infection are not left behind.

Also opening this week will be four mobile vaccination clinics – two paired with each vaccination site – which can be deployed to multiple locations within the community to amplify and provide distribution to areas that otherwise lack sufficient support.

The opening of these sites is additive to current vaccinations capacity in the state and does not affect existing allocation of vaccine supplies to other cities or counties.

These sites are in addition to substantial federal support for community vaccination centers across the state. On February 11, FEMA obligated $823 million to open 104 state-selected COVID-19 vaccination sites statewide. Funds will reimburse expenses for medical and support staff; personal protective equipment; facility costs and supplies; and community engagement efforts.

Community vaccination centers are part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s effort to ensure that all populations are being reached in the COVID-19 response. The Administration is also working to reach some of the nation’s hardest-hit communities through pharmacies, community health centers and mobile clinics.

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The news staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote or edited this story from local contributors and press releases. The news staff can be reached at