Kevin Weinberg of Morgan Hill received his Covid-19 vaccination booster shot at the Morgan Hill Community Cultural Center on Monterey Road on Sept. 25, 2021. Photo: Juan Reyes

Now that federal authorities have issued specific guidelines for “booster” shots for some people, public health officials, healthcare providers and volunteers are in the midst of a renewed push for vaccination against Covid-19 in Santa Clara County.

At a Sept. 25 vaccination clinic at the Morgan Hill Community & Cultural Center, Safeway and city officials teamed up with the local Rotary Club to provide third dose Pfizer vaccinations to individuals who are severely immunocompromised.

The Sept. 25 event was the 50th vaccination clinic in Morgan Hill since Covid-19 vaccines became widely available earlier this year. City Council member John McKay posted on social media that a “unique” aspect of these clinics is the partnership between the city and the Safeway/Albertsons company.

“This private/public working relationship has provided our community with over 18,000 doses of the life-saving and symptom-reducing vaccine,” McKay posted on his Facebook page Sept. 26.

He added that more than 95% of Morgan Hill residents have received at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, and more than 90% are fully vaccinated.

A local resident receives a Covid-19 booster shot at a Sept. 25 vaccination clinic held by the City of Morgan Hill and Safeway at the Community and Cultural Center. Photo: Juan Reyes

In Santa Clara County as a whole, more than 88% of residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine, while more than 84% are fully vaccinated, according to the county’s website.

Despite these high and climbing numbers, Safeway and local officials hope to have more vaccine clinics in the coming weeks.

Former City Council member Larry Carr, who works for Albertsons as Corporate Director for State & Local Government Relations, said the company is looking to host more Covid-19 and flu vaccination clinics in partnership with the city. No future dates have been set as of press time.

And a local nonprofit—The Edward Boss Prado Foundation—has already scheduled a vaccination clinic at Cecelia’s Closet and Food Pantry on Oct. 10. That clinic will provide first-series Pfizer vaccine doses to people age 12 and older, as well as third-dose booster shots for older people who qualify, according to Prado Foundation Director Cecelia Ponzini.

The Oct. 10 clinic will take place from 11:30am to 2pm at 35 Peebles Ave.

A Safeway pharmacy technician prepares a syringe needle with a shot the Covid-19 vaccination that was administered at the Morgan Hill Community Cultural Center on Monterey Road on Sept. 25. Photo: Juan Reyes

On Sept. 24, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new guidelines for a booster shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine. People in the following categories should seek a third Pfizer dose at least six months after their initial two-dose series of shots:

– People age 65 and older.

– Adults 18 and up living in long-term care settings.

– People ages 50–64 years with underlying medical conditions.

People who may receive a Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 Vaccine booster, according to the CDC, include:

– People ages 18–49 with an underlying medical condition.

– People ages 18–64 who are at increased risk for Covid-19 exposure and transmission due to working or residing in certain settings.

Shortly after the CDC announced the new booster shot recommendations, CVS Health announced that the pharmacy and retail store company is offering Covid-19 booster shots to eligible populations at nearly 6,000 stores across the country. These include 583 CVS stores in California.

As of Sept. 28, there have been 141,179 cases of Covid-19 in Santa Clara County, according to the county’s website. A total of 1,793 county residents have died with Covid-19. 

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Michael Moore is an award-winning journalist who has worked as a reporter and editor for the Morgan Hill Times, Hollister Free Lance and Gilroy Dispatch since 2008. During that time, he has covered crime, breaking news, local government, education, entertainment and more.


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