San Diego County begins to pause vaccine appointments due to shipment delays

Petco Park vaccination super station
Posted at 12:30 PM, Feb 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-22 13:12:17-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego County has started rescheduling coronavirus vaccine appointments at its Petco Park site after severe weather sweeping across the country delayed expected shipments.

Appointments at the Petco Park vaccination super station will be paused Friday and Saturday and may extend its closure to Sunday and Monday depending on vaccine arrivals, according to a county spokesperson. People who had appointments on those days will be emailed rescheduling information.

The county's POD sites and super station in San Marcos are only offering second doses and previously scheduled appointments for first doses are being automatically rescheduled.

RELATED: Stalled COVID-19 vaccine shipments to impact San Diego County appointments

Though the county is facing shortages, Sharp Healthcare says its sponsored sites at Grossmont Center, Chula Vista Center, and Coronado Community Center remain open through the weekend. Grossmont and Chula Vista are not offering Moderna vaccines, but are still doing first and second doses of Pfizer vaccines.

“All three sites are open today. We’re good with our appointments for today. For Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, it’s looking like we will have enough Pfizer for 1st and 2nd dose, but are still awaiting Moderna doses to arrive." a Sharp Healthcare spokesperson told ABC 10News.

Myron Soyangco, Sharp's clinic site lead at the Chula Vista super station, later confirmed to ABC 10News that all Moderna appointments for Friday through Sunday will be rescheduled.

"For example, if they were supposed to receive their Moderna vaccine this Saturday, they will be rescheduled to the following Saturday where possible," said Soyangco.

The healthcare system said on social media that it isn't able to schedule any more vaccination appointments due to the shipping delays.

Palomar Health's downtown Escondido location has paused all Friday appointments. A spokesperson said those appointments were for Pfizer vaccine first doses. Saturday appointments at the location for Moderna vaccines will continue, the spokesperson added. The location will be closed Sunday and Monday, as per usual.

Wednesday, Board of Supervisors Chairman Nathan Fletcher said public health officials expect the delays to have an immediate impact on vaccine distribution.

"Last week we literally begged, borrowed, and stole vaccines in order to keep as much of our system and structure in places running and a second set of delays is going to have very significant impacts on our system," Fletcher said during a Wednesday press conference.

He said that the county had still not received the entirety of a shipment from Moderna that was delayed last week, and is now delayed again due to the winter weather. The county was expecting nearly 53,000 vaccine doses this week, including a portion of the Moderna shipment delayed last week.

Moderna's primary manufacturing facility is in Michigan, while Pfizer's is located in Massachusetts. Severe weather across the country has slowed U.S. shipments of vaccine doses.

Despite the delays, Fletcher said the county is confident it will be able to start vaccinating all of the first tier of Phase 1B, including teachers, police officers and law enforcement, and essential workers in food and agriculture.