COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older title=
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older
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By edhat staff

The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department (PHD) announced COVID-19 vaccinations will open to anyone age 65 and older next week but warned vaccine supply is still limited.

Residents of Santa Barbara County who are age 65 and older will be eligible to receive their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine beginning Tuesday, February 16. This expanded eligibility means that local health care providers, pharmacies, hospitals, and PHD vaccination sites can open appointments to those 65+ once vaccines become available to them.

Vaccine supplies are still very limited and health care providers are simultaneously ensuring those that received the first dose will also be able to receive a second dose. Appointments will also be limited.

“We ask that until vaccine supply increases, the community allow those at greatest risk for exposure and serious health outcomes to make their vaccine appointments first,” said Van Do-Reynoso, PHD Director. “The entire community will have the opportunity to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and work toward the community as a whole being safe from the risks of the virus.”

Just under 6,000 doses of vaccine are expected to arrive in Santa Barbara County next week, the vast majority of which are slated for second doses. Approximately 11,000 second doses will be administered in the next two weeks. Santa Barbara County currently has more than 40,000 residents between the ages of 65-74 years old. Appointments will likely become available through health care providers and pharmacies before they become available at Public Health vaccination sites.

“We are excited to open appointments to vulnerable community members to have their first access to the vaccine” said, Dr. Do-Reynoso. “We are continuing to make progress in vaccine administration based on the maximum allocation Santa Barbara County is able to request from the state.”

Health Officer Dr. Henning Ansorg confirmed PHD decided to separate Phase 1B, delaying vaccination for education/childcare, emergency medical service, and food/agricultural workers by approximately two weeks. He said most negative outcomes regarding COVID-19 are in people aged 65 or older and the limited supply led to separating vaccine administration in this group.

As of Friday, PHD has received 61,000 doses of vaccine and 99% have been administered. Approximately 45,000 of the first dose have been administered and 14,000 of the second dose.

Dr. Ansorg stated the county has approximately vaccinated two-thirds of the 75 years of age and older population. He estimated about 70% of this population wanted the vaccine with the other 30% deciding not to receive it, however, the option to receive the vaccine is open at any time. 

Upcoming Eligibilities and Vaccine Distribution Changes

California officials announced that starting on March 15, people between the ages of 16 and 64 who have a severe underlying health condition or are at risk due to a developmental or other severe disability will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. 

This will include people with cancer, chronic kidney disease, chronic pulmonary disease, down syndrome, an immunocompromised state from solid organ transplant, pregnancy, sickle cell disease, heart conditions, severe obesity, and type 2 diabetes. 

Also in mid-March, California will transition vaccine distribution to a Third-Pary Administrator (TPA), Blue Shield of California. This means the local public health department will not be in charge of the vaccine supply but instead will be given allocations from Blue Shield. PHD stated there will be local changes in the way vaccine is administered and more information will be shared as it is known.

Dr. Ansorg stated the vaccine shortage could have been averted if the federal government shipped the number of doses that were initially promised, at least triple of what ended up being available. Fortunately, the production is ramping up nationally and it's possible anyone over the age of 16 could get the vaccine by the end of April, he said. 

Additionally, community healthcare centers and pharmacies are expecting to receive vaccine allocations directly from the federal government. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will also open mass vaccination sites in Los Angeles and Oakland on Monday that will be able to vaccinate 6,000 people per day in each location.

For information about the COVID-19 vaccine and countywide availability, please visit or call 2-1-1 and press “4” for assistance. The County Call Center is available 7 days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  

Dr. Do-Reynoso did acknowledge the long wait times and extended busy signal when calling 2-1-1 due to the high call volume. PHD currently has 11 people working the call center and they plan to add up to 12 more staff members.

Revised Health Officer Order

On Friday, PHD issued a new Health Officer Order, which included the following changes:

  • Gyms can offer one-on-one personal fitness training indoors for one person at a time. No more than a total of one personal fitness trainer and one client are permitted indoors at a time. When providing one-on-one personal fitness training indoors, gyms must follow California Department of Public Health guidance for “limited services.”)

  • Places of worship and providers of religious and cultural ceremonies may operate indoors with occupancy limited to 25% capacity (so long as guidance and additional modifications followed, as provided by California Department of Public Health guidance for places of worship)

  • Wedding ceremonies may occur indoors with occupancy limited to 25% capacity (so long as state guidance and additional modifications are made pursuant to California Department of Public Health guidance for places of worship). 

Friday's Numbers

On Friday PHD announced 87 new COVID-19 cases and one death. The individual was over the age of 70 with underlying medical conditions and resided in Santa Maria. The death was not associated with an outbreak at a congregate facility.

There are currently 741 active cases in the county. Of those, 139 are hospitalized including 28 in the ICU. Santa Barbara County now has 31.6% ICU availability. 

Dr. Ansorg stated the case rates and testing positivity within the county going down has been a "great relief." He urged the community to stay vigilant with social distancing and mask-wearing to make sure the downward trend continues. 

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RHS Feb 13, 2021 11:48 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Sea Dog, people on your side of the political divide constantly rant about the out of control personal injury bar who is allegedly solely responsible for the high price of medical care in this country and which pursues absurd claims of tortious conduct by otherwise good people, etc. But you apparently believe that people who, against the overwhelming science of the stuff, say they were harmed by vaccines should be able to hire some p.i. lawyer and hold MDs and others hostage until their claims are paid???? I don't believe you.

ChillinGrillin Feb 13, 2021 06:03 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

There is a weird quirk of human psychology that doubts legitimate science and facts just because others are doubting it. Our job as reasonable people is to realize that most people have absolutely no idea what they're talking about at any given time. To paraphrase George Carlin, this entire country is full of it and to some extent always has been. Get a shot and ignore the anti-vax Karen's who avoid modern medicine but think crystals have force-fields. Let them die or get seriously ill, it's the natural course of evolution for the ignorant to die off.

NostraChumash Feb 14, 2021 08:22 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Indigenous cultures have used crystals for tens of thousands of years, & have lived an harmonious existence with nature..whereas, your "culture", which has only been on this continent for 500 years..has brought about it's complete destruction.
Yet, Natives are Ignorant & Nature will kill us off due to our own blindness?
I find the statement in itself, to be ignorant.

dw2000 Feb 14, 2021 11:43 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

We all live on the same planet, the same sandbox. Disease doesn't care about history. And crystals do nothing to prevent the spread of covid, except possibly spread it faster if people forgo vaccines do to mistaken faith in crystals. I for one await with eager anticipation the opportunity to get the vaccine.

Basicinfo805 Feb 14, 2021 12:04 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

I agree w Chillin, crystals vs vaccine? No brainer. Please everyone try and get your vaccine as soon as you can. Nostrachumash I don't know anything about you but my gut reaction is that you're against the concept of vaccinations. This seems ironic because the Chumash were wiped out largely by infectious diseases, the likes of which science has currently knocked down through....wait for it, vaccinations.

NostraChumash Feb 14, 2021 01:08 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Not at all..
I advocate for the use of ancient Indigenous medical practise, as well as the use or in combination, of western medicines, since most current maladies are European in origin.
For those who carry the "knowledge", earth medicine,
sometimes called Shamanism..
crystals, sounds, ants, venom etc..all play an effective role in healing..don't dis-count them.
Continue to "follow yer gut"..
It will serve you well..smiles.

Bene Feb 14, 2021 05:38 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

NostraChumash, There are indeed some ancient remedies such as aspirin -like compounds that are incorporated in very useful modern western medicine. Derived from willow bark, I believe, the ancient Chinese and Indian Tribes etc. used a compound similar to modern day aspirin. Also, I believe some of the healing you speak of is also of use today---if even just for the psychological benefit that can heal physically. By the way, did you know the healer, Grandfather? (I only knew him by that name.) I knew him years ago and thought him so wise. I'm not sure though if he was with the Santa Ynez band--but he was in Santa Barbara a lot.

Bene Feb 14, 2021 06:54 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

To those who downvoted NostraChumash's advocacy for ancient indigenous medical practice, please check out , which points out that some traditional healing is ritualistic but also has the aspect of so called "rational therapy" with indigenous botanical drugs. The first U.S. Pharmacopeia, issued in 1820, listed more than 130 drugs used by American Indians. At that time, native Americans also had advanced knowledge of asepsis, pain relief, contraception, isolation of patients with disease and sanitary practices. The Shamanistic aspect probably sometimes has as good a success rate as current psychiatric practice based on the DSM. I am all for vaccines, including this one, but at the same time, will not discount Native American contributions to healing.

ChemicalSuperFreak Feb 14, 2021 07:13 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

BENE: In biochemistry, natural products are often the starting point for rational drug design. This is why many, such as myself, are concerned about the deforestation in going on in places like the Amazon. There may be a treasure trove of compounds in such places that have yet to be discovered. Many organic chemists also spend great effort to synthesize analogues of such natural products for similar purposes. You mentioned salicylic acid, a natural non-steroidal anti-inflammatory from the willow bark, which when converted to acetylsalicylic acid by chemists became aspirin.

Bene Feb 14, 2021 09:49 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Chem, that would be fascinating to find some new compounds! Hope Bolsonaro will change his policies. Interesting, the point I think you were making, that while we analyze molecular structure of natural substances to synthesize (and standardize, purify?) we still need nature to come up with new “blue prints.”

NostraChumash Feb 15, 2021 09:12 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Thanks for your voice Bene..
Perhaps you are thinking of Grandpa Semu Hu 'ayute, or
Granpa Stone?..
Just remember everyone..
20k years (us), compared to 500 years (you)..
I think we know what we're talking about.

NostraChumash Feb 16, 2021 08:47 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Yes Bumblebee, they would..
You see, the most recent scientific evidence shows that ancient people did not drive the fauna to extinction, as was an old & popular theory, until a better understanding of climate change occured.
Repeating that old information only shows a lack of effort to stay abreast regarding the latest research.
Tarzan was'nt really "King of the apes", Columbus did'nt discover america & island of the blue dolphins never happened.

ChemicalSuperFreak Feb 13, 2021 11:46 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

I hope all you older folks were able to get your COVID vaccines, because now Newsom is opening up vaccinations to 16 and older who have pre-existing conditions (1), such as obesity, which is at least 27% of the CA population (2), and Type 2 diabetes, which is another 7% of the CA population (3). Basically 1/3 of the state will soon be allowed to compete for whatever vaccines are available. Welcome to the hunger games. I'm sure this has nothing to do with the recall petition reaching the required number of signatures.




letmego Feb 14, 2021 01:27 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Well, if the risk of death is approximately the same for the groups, does it really matter if they have the same priority? Also, don't forget the overlap in the three groups (obese, diabetic, and 65+). For example:
Obesity in 18-24 age group is 13.1%. It's 24.4% is the 65+ group.
1/6 of all adults >65 have Type 2 diabetes.

Obesity rates decline with increasing household income. Obesity is often a disease of poverty.
For typical 7th and 9th graders (from your #2, above), obesity rates are more than double for economically disadvantaged students compared to those who are not economically disadvantaged.

ChemicalSuperFreak Feb 14, 2021 03:24 PM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

40 million in CA, with 6 million first doses administered to healthcare workers, first responders, and most but not all of the elderly. 2 million unused doses remain, not enough (at this time) to cover the second dose for the aforementioned groups. Now you want to open up first dose vaccinations to another 12+ million people. Good luck with that. If patterns are an indication, this will continue to be a poorly managed vaccine rollout due to all the unnecessary policy changes, driven purely by politics.

Stray Feb 16, 2021 06:28 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

The article states that Santa Barbara County has received 61,000 doses, with 99% administered. Santa Barbara County has a population of 440,000. That's a vaccination rate of nearly 13.7%.

The United States as a whole and the State of California as a whole are closer to a 20% vaccination rate.

Just wondering why the supply for Santa Barbara County is apparently way below the rate of the State and our nation.

PitMix Feb 16, 2021 07:31 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Because Newsom controls the manufacturing plants in those other states. Such an evil genius in control of everything and intentionally making our lives miserable so he can get re-elected. Eyeroll.

Voice of Reason Feb 16, 2021 07:38 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Imagine that, shortages of a vaccine that was only created in the past few months (in record time) that hundreds of millions in the US want. If only Biden was president this entire time he would have magically waived his hands above vials of water and poof, vaccines for everyone.

dukemunson Feb 16, 2021 09:26 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Actually we are doing spectacularly well at vaccinating compared to pretty much every other country!!

PitMix Feb 16, 2021 11:11 AM
COVID-19 Vaccinations Open to Age 65 and Older

Israel is the top country, somehow they were able to purchase enough for their entire population. Or we can be like New Zealand and do shut downs when it is needed. Who am I kidding, we could never be anything like New Zealand.

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