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CVS starts vaccinating nursing home residents and staff in San Diego

Posted at 5:27 PM, Dec 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-28 20:27:29-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - On Monday, CVS pharmacists started vaccinating nursing home residents and staff in San Diego and across the state. CVS expects to give the vaccine to around 700,000 people across the state.

“We've really tried to be careful. We've had no COVID-19 cases, thank the Lord, at our skilled nursing facilities,” Ellen Schmeding with San Diego’s St. Paul’s Senior Services told ABC10 News on Monday. Residents at its Banker’s Hill location start having access to the vaccine this Wednesday.

“They've been around. They've seen polio and small pox. They know what a great gift it is to have the vaccine available right now,” she added.

CVS Health District Leader Lisa Kalajian told ABC10 News on Monday, “We have 40,000 long term care facilities that opted to go with us for vaccinations nationwide and 15,000 of those are in California.” Over the next 12 weeks, she said that the company will begin with vaccinating residents and staff at nursing homes, followed by residents and staff at assisted living facilities.

Kalajian said that the company can't provide the list of facilities in San Diego, where the county is seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases. The latest numbers show there are 48 active outbreaks at those type of facilities. She said that the company plans to enter long term care facilities three times. Once for the initial vaccination, then for the booster shot and finally to cover anyone who was left behind.

The goal, she told ABC10 News, is to eventually offer the shot to the general public at in-store locations, although that's not been finalized. “We are starting with long term care facilities but are contracted to move onto the general public. We are anticipating March [or] April but that timeline is very fluid,” she added.