Dignity Health – Northridge Hospital Medical Center received its first doses last week, according to Blair Galbreath, director of pharmacy for the hospital. Dr. Imran Sharief was the first to be vaccinated at the Northridge facility, hospital staff said on social media.
Kaiser Permanente in Woodland Hills and Providence Cedars-Sinai Tarzana Medical Center received shipments of the Pfizer vaccine and began administering doses to nurses and other frontline workers on Dec. 17.
“The arrival of the vaccine for our frontline health care workers is an important milestone in our fight against COVID-19 and it offers significant hope of defeating this virus; however, it will take many months and perseverance to achieve anything near ‘herd immunity,’” the Hospital Association of Southern California said in a statement. “We must continue to comply with stay-at-home orders, masking, and physical distancing. There is typically a two-week lag between ‘spreader’ events and hospitalizations, and the upcoming holidays could mean our hospitals will be further impacted with little respite for weary health care workers and all other hospital staff.”
Vaccines can’t come fast enough, state leaders said, with intensive care unit capacity at zero percent for Southern California and L.A. County cases passing 600,000. More than 100,000 of those new cases were reported within the past two weeks.
Between the Pfizer version and another made by Moderna, more than 2.8 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been distributed across the country since both options were granted emergency use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, with roughly 556,000 administered as of Sunday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
California’s very first shipment of the Pfizer vaccine contained 327,000 doses. Los Angeles, along with Orange, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties received 126,750 doses.