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Vaccine eligibility update

Categories: Health & safety, Vaccine

Last modified on

Dear Stanford community,

Eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination is expanding in the Bay Area. Santa Clara County will expand vaccination eligibility starting this Sunday, Feb. 28, to workers in Phase 1B, which includes individuals in education and child care, emergency services, and the food and agriculture industries. Other counties in the Bay Area have also taken this step recently.

I am writing to provide you an update amid this changing vaccination landscape.

As I said in my message to the community last week, counties, including Santa Clara, are pointing to state eligibility criteria for Phase 1B, which for individuals in education and child care requires that they be “at risk of occupational exposure to SARS-CoV-2 through their work.” We have not received additional clarification. Our current understanding is that many vaccination providers are taking a broad interpretation of the “education” category. We believe this will include staff, faculty and postdocs, and may include students who are paid for their roles on campus or have work requirements similar to certain employees, such as student residential staff, graduate research assistants and teaching assistants, laboratory personnel and others. However, vaccine availability under the “education” category may vary across different vaccination sites, with some providers taking a more strict interpretation of the risk criteria in the state guidelines.

We realize that there are many questions about when vaccines may be available to the rest of the student population, which is not included in Phase 1B. We promise to let you know as we learn more about when students may become eligible.

Vaccinations are being provided to eligible individuals through many channels, including your health care provider (or any health care provider, if you live in Santa Clara County), certain pharmacies, or government-run mass vaccination sites. Stanford’s Vaccinations web page has details on scheduling an appointment based on the county where you reside.

In addition, when you sign up for a vaccination appointment, please be aware that some vaccination sites may require you to bring some documentation of eligibility. For instance, Santa Clara County, which is managing the vaccination site at Levi’s Stadium, requires “a government-issued photo ID showing residence and date of birth, badge from your work, a paystub, or other documentation from your employer. Other forms of documentation may be acceptable to prove eligibility.”

Equitable allocation of vaccines is an essential part of the distribution processes that counties and health care providers are managing. As part of this effort, Stanford Health Care is working to expand vaccination opportunities for members of the community who are essential workers or otherwise at greater risk of exposure to the virus. SHC is working on launching a vaccine clinic in East San Jose to provide immunizations in a community particularly hard hit by the virus. SHC is working with Stanford so that employees and contractors from similar risk groups who are working on the Stanford campus will have access to a limited number of vaccination appointments on the Stanford campus.

Finally, please keep in mind that vaccine supply remains limited in the short term. We will keep you updated as we learn more. Please continue to check http://healthalerts.stanford.edu/vaccinations for the latest information on this issue.

Russell Furr
Associate Vice Provost
Environmental Health & Safety