“We’ve made a lot of progress in vaccinating our health care workers and older residents, and it’s time to move ahead to protect our essential workers,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County’s Public Health Officer. ”Vaccinating teachers, food service workers, and others who have been on the front lines will offer our community another crucial layer of protection as we roll out the vaccine.”
The announcement is great news for workers in each of those sectors and the communities that depend on them. But it comes with a significant caveat: While workers in the aforementioned five sectors are now eligible to receive a vaccine anywhere in the Bay Area, vaccine appointments remain in limited supply due to continued limited allocations from state and federal sources. In addition, measures are being taken to reserve doses for those at highest risk, and some health care providers may continue to prioritize vaccine for patients who are 65 and older and have not yet had an opportunity to be vaccinated, county officials said.
Marin County Public Health officials will reach out to employers of the essential workforce groups to connect employees with vaccination options. In addition, essential workers eligible for vaccine will be able to access vaccine through commercial pharmacies such as Walgreens, CVS, and Rite Aid and neighboring vaccine sites offered through the state’s MyTurn appointment system. More pharmacies plan to start offering vaccine to Marin residents in the next two weeks as doses become available.
A list of Marin-based vaccine providers, including eligibility and appointment information, is listed on Public Health’s vaccine options webpage.
Marin County Public Health and health care providers began an immunization program for those 75 and older on January 21. Vaccinations for Marin residents age 65-74 opened on February 15. Older adults were prioritized in Marin and across the state because of their vulnerability to, and risk of severe outcomes from, the COVID-19 virus. To date, more than 60% of all Marin County residents above age 65, and 19.3% of all Marin residents – more than 50,000 people – have received at least one dose of vaccine, in addition to thousands more Marin-based health care workers who live in other counties but help care for Marin residents.