LONG BEACH (CBSLA) – California Gov. Gavin Newsom Monday morning blamed the state’s limited supply of COVID-19 vaccine on a “manufacturing issue.”
Speaking at the Long Beach Convention Center, Newsom told reporters that over 7.3 million people have been vaccinated so far statewide. He estimates California will receive about 1.4 million new doses this week.
“There’s not enough vaccinations, there’s not enough doses,” Newsom said. “There’s not enough vaccines to accommodate the need and demand, just at this site (Long Beach Convention Center) they’re running about a third of capacity. Sites all across the state of California are toggling back based upon limited supply. That’s a manufacturing issue. Manufactured supply in the United States of America is limited.”
Newsom said an average of 200,000 doses are being administered daily statewide.
Last Thursday, the city of Los Angeles was forced to shut down its COVID-19 vaccination super sites after running out of doses due to delivery issues caused by the winter storms which hit large swaths of the U.S. The city sites, which include Dodger Stadium, are expected to reopen Tuesday.
The L.A. County-operated super sites, meanwhile, have for the past two weeks been only able to administer second-doses because of the very limited supply.
Newsom also addressed the education debate. He emphasized that the city of Long Beach, which has its own independent health department, has been vaccinating its Long Beach Unified teachers since January.
L.A. County as a whole has not officially started to vaccinate all its teachers. Currently in L.A. County, only healthcare workers and those over 65 are eligible to receive the vaccine.
All L.A. County teachers are expected to get vaccine eligibility beginning March 1.
“There’s nothing more essential and more important we can do to support working women, and single moms in particular, than getting our youngest kids back into school in cohorts where we can do it safely,” Newsom said. “And Long Beach is not waiting around to do that. This mayor (Robert Garcia) has been doing that for weeks and weeks.”
L.A. Unified – the second largest school district in the nation – has said that it will not reopen campuses until teachers and staff are vaccinated.
Newsom reiterated Monday that, beginning next week, the state will set aside 10% of its doses for teachers and childcare workers.
“I have no trepidation saying this, we’re going to get that ten percent set aside, that is a commitment, we’re resolved to get that done for our teachers and educators.”