Millions of Californians over the age of 50 are now eligible to get COVID-19 vaccinations, but they may need to be patient -- there simply aren’t enough vaccine doses to go around.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom, who is 52, got his single shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on Thursday. Meanwhile, thousands of other Californians are trying to navigate websites for appointments to get their doses.
There are 7.2 million Californians between the ages of 50-64. Nearly 3 million of them already got at least one shot, which means about 4 million people are still eligible.
Getting an appointment, however, can be daunting.
“When I knew that it was gonna be my turn, I went online and I tried everything I could to get an appointment, to no avail,” said Wendy Harp.
Harp, like so many others trying to navigate California’s MyTurn.gov website, got frustrated when she tried to find an appointment. She went online at all hours of the day and night, tried several different vaccination location, and she still came up empty.
“You think there’s a glimmer of hope, there’s an opening, and then it says, 'No availability,' ” Harp said.
In the end, Harp decided to be a part of the solution. By volunteering for three shifts at a vaccination station, she earned a trip to the front of the line.
“Get some karma points, help people, make it a good experience, so why not?” Harp said.
The appointment backlog should clear up as more vaccines make their way to California, hopefully before April 15, when Californians 16 and older become eligible.