VALLEY VILLAGE (CBSLA) – Administrators at Los Angeles Valley College said they are discussing whether or not to require students and staff to be vaccinated when the return to campus starts in the fall.
On Saturday, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health reported 3,318 new cases of COVID-19 and 11 additional deaths.READ MORE: CHP Motorcycle Officer Involved In Traffic Collision On Eastbound 105 Freeway At Bellflower Boulevard
The number of coronavirus patients in the hospital continued to spike in Los Angeles County Saturday, rising from 1,008 on Friday to 1,071, according to state figures. The number of those patients in intensive care dropped by one to 231.
Amid the spike in cases and hospitalizations, primarily due to the more contagious Delta variant, health experts around the southland said they are seeing more and more people get their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“It had tended to turn downward, especially in June, but now it’s going back up again,” Will Baker, a COVID-19 vaccine clinic manager, said.
Other schools, like Harvard Westlake High School and the University of California system, are now requiring vaccines to return to fall classes.
“A lot of parents are concerned about children returning to school and being exposed to the Delta variant,” Baker said.
About to go into middle school, Sophia Moran recently received her vaccine.
“I’m excited to go back to school, especially since I’m entering middle school. I just want to go back to normal and have friends adn be able to talk to people without worrying about the virus,” Moran said.READ MORE: First Weekend Eligible Adults Can Receive Pfizer's COVID-19 Booster Shot In Los Angeles County
While it mulls requiring vaccines, LA Valley College is offering a variety of incentives to get people in the community, including their students and staff, vaccinated.
At an all day clinic on Saturday, vaccine recipients could get their choice of gifts, including water bottles, sunglasses and, for students and staff, a bonus $150 gift card to the college bookstore.
“I got an email from my college that they are doing vaccination event here and I’m like this is the perfect time to get it, enough postponing,” Shushanik Tsaghkyan, an LAVC student, said.
A four hour popup clinic in Hollywood, sponsored by Walmart and the nonprofit Para Los Ninos, was also passing out vaccines Saturday to eligible children and adults.
“My mom also got it and nothing happened to her. I was like, ‘Okay, let’s just go get it,'” Leonardo Lopez, who received the vaccine at the popup, said.
Pharmacists running the Hollywood clinic said they are seeing an increasing in recent days of people receiving a vaccination.
“With the Delta Variant out there right now, it’s been spreading so quickly. A lot of people are realizing that it’s important to get vaccinated to protect not only themselves, but the community also,” Walmart Pharmacy Manager, Bobby Ho, said.
LAVC said they have at least another three clinics in August that will be open to anyone in the community.MORE NEWS: Man Shot And Killed By Huntington Police Saturday As Nearby Crowds Watched U.S. Open Of Surfing