Beginning April 1, those aged 50 and up will be qualified for the shot, Newsom said. Right now, the vaccine is only available to those deemed high-risk of contracting the virus, or those in danger of suffering serious health complications as a result of it.
“In just a few weeks, there’ll be no rules, no limitations as it relates to the ability to get a vaccine administered,” Newsom told reporters.
As of March 25, the state is also loosening restrictions in inoculating family members of residents who are eligible to get the vaccine.
“Effective today, regardless of your age, regardless of your preexisting condition, if someone comes in, eligible under the existing rules, but with a family member, we will accommodate the family member, no questions asked,” Newsom said.
Vaccine supply in California has been widely limited, with residents struggling to find appointments, but Newsom said that’s about to change.
While the state received 1.8 million doses last week, it will begin receiving 2.5 million doses per week within a few weeks.
Newsom said this is positive news for those who have been waiting their turn, including Newsom himself, who will be eligible April 1 as he is above 50 years old.
“I look forward to getting the best shot, and the best vaccine is the next one available, whatever that vaccine is,” he said, encouraging those eligible to sign up for an appointment.
As of March 23, the state passed the threshold of administering 15 million doses of the vaccine, and is currently closing in on 16 million, Newsom said.
“There’s not just a light at the end of the tunnel, there’s a bright light at the end of the tunnel,” he said. “That’s close to 6 million more than any other state in the country. We are administering more doses than all but five other nations in the world.”
The only current restriction is manufacturing supply, he said.
Newsom said that by the end of April, the state will be capable of administering 4 million doses per week.
The governor also discussed how the state has seen positive results after committing 40 percent of new vaccines to underprivileged communities.
“We were the first and the most bold state in America, to lay a marker with that 40 percent, to commit to a cause to truly be accountable, and more transparent to delivering in communities large and small all across the state, and we’re seeing progress every day on that goal,” he said.
“We are not walking away from our equity, quite the contrary. We’ll continue to double down on all of those equity frames … we truly want to flood those areas. … That’s the commitment again of reinforcing an equity mindset in a meaningful and demonstrable way.”
Newsom said the state is on its way to a “green” tier, but didn’t give details as to what that would mean for eligible counties. Currently, the yellow tier is the least restrictive tier as part of the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy.