Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa counties join California push to vaccinate those 16 and up

More California counties are opening up vaccines to younger adults, a week ahead of the state broadening eligibility to everyone 16 and up.

Santa Clara, Contra Costa and Alameda counties in the San Francisco Bay Area and Fresno County in the central valley are the latest to open up vaccinations to everyone eligible to get one, although younger residents in Santa Clara must book an appointment for April 15 or later. 

Health officials also noted that those aged 16 and 17 only have the option of receiving the two-shot Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, as the other vaccines currently available in the U.S., those from Moderna and Johnson and Johnson, have only been approved for those 18 years and older.

The county encouraged residents to make an appointment through the state’s portal. 

California plans to qualify all residents 16 and older for the vaccine starting Thursday. 

There was also hope that those as young as 12 years old will be added to the eligibility list in the coming months. Last week Pfizer announced it has asked the Food and Drug Administration to expand emergency use authorization of its vaccine to children ages 12 to 15.

Last week, Facebook announced that it would convert part of its Menlo Park headquarters in the Bay Area into a vaccination site and hoped to vaccinate as many as 10,000 people in coming weeks.

Vaccine supplies could shrink when eligibility expands next week.