A new mass vaccine distribution hub that is part of a statewide effort to curb the spread of COVID-19 opened at Cal Poly Pomona on Friday.
Set up in Parking Structure 2 and Parking Lot B, the hub will operate seven days a week, as long as supplies last. It will start slowly, offering approximately 500 to 1,000 vaccinations by appointment per day and potentially increasing to 5,000 a day next week.
The effort is led by a consortium that Kaiser Permanente forged and includes Adventist Health, the California Medical Association, Dignity Health and Futuro Health. Distribution will follow the state’s established phases and tiers, a plan the California Department of Public Health designed.
University President Soraya M. Coley toured the hub on opening day and shared her excitement for the campus participating in the effort.
“Cal Poly Pomona has been an anchor institution for 80-plus years. We see ourselves not only as providing an outstanding educational experience for our students that launches them into social mobility, but we also see ourselves as a partner in the social, economic, and health and wellbeing of our community,” she said.
“I want to thank Kaiser and the consortium for calling us and there was no hesitation. It was ‘What do you need us to do, when do you need to have it done, and how can we help sustain this important access point for our residents — not only in Pomona, but in the region.’”
Hilda Solis (’79, political science), who chairs the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, also visited the site.
Donning CPP’s traditional colors of green and gold, Solis expressed pride that her alma mater is serving as a major vaccination hub for the region and remarked that the university’s access through public transportation made the campus an ideal location. In addition to being close to the 57 and 10 freeways, the hub is accessible by several Foothill Transit bus lines.
“How fantastic it is that we’re going to provide access to people who may not have a car. What is very important here is that people have access,” she said. “That they can take a bus or maybe even be able to take the Metro. It’s not going to be cost prohibitive. We should make sure everyone takes advantage.”
Pomona Mayor Tim Sandoval praised the effort to make sure that the vaccine is being distributed to communities that have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19.
He said he is grateful that “people from our community, particularly a place like Pomona, which has been hard hit by the pandemic, that (residents) have a place to go to get this vaccine. I am incredibly thankful for the leadership,” he said. “I have no doubt that our residents are going to benefit from this, not only our residents but residents throughout the region.”
The university has established a Vaccine Hub webpage with maps and directions to help guide members of the public to Lot B and Parking Structure 2. To get more information about eligibility requirements and how to make an appointment in your area, visit California’s My Turn website. Those without email or access to Internet can call the CA COVID-19 Hotline for assistance at 1-833-422-4255 on weekdays from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. and from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. on weekends.