By Kathryn Izishu, Contributing Writer
If you are 65 and above, it is time to get your COVID-19 shot. Luckily, Contra Costa County has opened four large sites. The closest to Lamorinda is Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill. There are also sites in Martinez, Richmond and Antioch. To register through the Contra Costa County, visit this link: bit.ly/3dcOQoR.
For more information about Contra Costa County Health’s Vaccination Program visit: www.coronavirus.cchealth.org/vaccine.
If you don’t have access to the Internet or don’t use computers, you can call 833.829.2626 to speak with an agent.
OptumServ has set up at the Tice Valley Gymnasium. To register for a vaccination there, visit: https://myoptumserve.com/covid19.
You can also call OptumServ: 877.218.0381 and press 7 to register for a vaccination.
Sutter Health has opened up their Vaccination Operations. To register visit: www.sutterhealth.org/for-patients/health-alerts/covid-19-vaccine, or call 844.987.6115.
Safeway, CVS and Rite Aid have opened pharmacies to help with vaccinations as well. Here is a site that tracks vaccine availability: http://www.vaccinateca.com. You can also try calling your local pharmacy to see if they have availability.
The two available vaccines are Pfizer and Moderna, both requiring a follow-up dose. If possible, schedule your second appointment at the time you schedule your first, so you are guaranteed your follow up dose within the appropriate window (Pfizer: 19-42 days after first dose; Moderna: 28 days after first dose).
If the process of registering for the vaccine is overwhelming, call Lamorinda Village at 925.283.3500. A volunteer will help you. If you are unable to drive to your vaccination appointment, there are three non-profit organizations to contact, Mobility Matters (925.284.2207), Lamorinda Spirit Van (925.283.3534) and Orinda residents can also contact Seniors Around Town at 925.402.4506 with a ride request. All three offer rides for seniors in our area, and both are gearing up to drive seniors to vaccination clinics.
If you’d like to be a volunteer driver, please email Lamorinda Village at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For those who have been vaccinated, Science Times gives reasons why you should continue to wear masks in public. The current vaccines are not 100% effective (most estimate 94-95%). They don’t immediately provide protection (typically, two weeks after the second dose). It’s not known if the vaccine will prevent you from spreading COVID-19, even if you’re symptom free. Masks protect those with immunocompromised systems, and masks can help protect against new strains of COVID-19.