By CBSLA Staff

LONG BEACH (CBSLA) — With vaccinations being opened up to people 65 people and older, grocery store workers, and teachers, Long Beach officials are warning people to be on alert for scams.

Long Beach Mayor Garcia Robert Garcia, City Manager Tom Modica, and Health and Human Services Director Kelly Colopy all received the first of two doses of the Moderna vaccine Thursday, kicking off the city’s move into the next phase of their vaccination schedule. According to Garcia, he and other city officials are included in Phase 1B as front-line municipal workers responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Appointments for vaccinations are already full, but residents can register for a future appointment by emailing or calling (562) 570-4636.

Vaccinations will be offered to grocery store workers at the Long Beach Convention Center vaccination site starting Tuesday. Those workers can schedule an appointment for the vaccine through their employers.

An alert from the city of Long Beach says that scammers are using robocalls, social media posts and emails to take advantage of the fear, anxiety and confusion swirling about when it comes to COVID-19 and the vaccine.

Long Beach’s Health and Human Services Department is managing the city’s distribution of the vaccine, which are being made available to people in two phases, with sub-phases and tiered sub-prioritization. City officials say widespread distribution of the vaccine to the general public is months away and will be free to Long Beach residents, regardless of immigration status.

The city says residents should remember that employees will not contact them requesting personal identifying or insurance information. They say anyone selling a chance to jump the line, early access, a special discount or “under the table” access is a scammer. They also say no one selling a vaccine online, door-to-door, or on social media is legitimate.

Residents who have requested a vaccination, but were unable to get an appointment may be placed on a waitlist – but they won’t be asked to pay a fee.

To report a possible COVID-19 scam, visit the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs or call (800) 593-8222.