The Johnson & Johnson vaccine has arrived in the Inland Empire, which means the new vaccine will be available at both Riverside and San Bernardino County vaccination sites later this week.
Riverside University Health System’s Dr. Geoffrey Leung told his board of supervisors this influx of new vaccine supply means all appointments for county run vaccination sites are now open to both first and second dose appointments. Up until now most sites in Riverside County were limited to first dose appointments.
“With the increasingly supply and the increasing numbers of people who need second doses we want to make it easier for people to schedule," said Leung.
He explained that for those people who have received a first dose at a public health vaccination site, they will continue to receive an invitation to register for a second dose clinic. If that date is inconvenient, people can schedule a different time through the website, as long as it’s been at least three weeks since their first Pfizer dose or four weeks since their Moderna dose.
Both Riverside and San Bernardino County are also preparing to open up vaccination to people with health problems next week on March 15. The state released a list of conditions that will qualify including cancer, uncontrolled type 2 diabetes, and lung conditions that require oxygen use.
Inland Empire public health officials say they are waiting on state guidance for how to ensure qualified patients receive the vaccine. Some options being discussed are the use of a doctor’s note or an honor system.
Vaccination appointments for Riverside County can be found at rivcoph.org/COVID-19-Vaccine.
Vaccination appointments for San Bernardino County can be found at sbcovid19.com/vaccine/.