Orange County's vaccine shortage prompts temporary closure of Disneyland, Santa Ana College sites

ANAHEIM, Calif. (KABC) -- Disneyland's mass vaccination site closed Thursday and will stay shut down through at least Monday due to severe winter storms across the U.S. disrupting vaccine delivery, Orange County officials announced Thursday.

Officials say Orange County is short on the Moderna vaccine, which is the supply mainly dispensed at the Disneyland site. A new batch was expected to arrive Tuesday, but didn't.

The vaccine shortage may also delay the opening of a new site at the Anaheim Convention Center planned for Wednesday. That site is also dependent on the Moderna vaccine.

The point of dispensing sites -- also known as a PODs -- at Soka University and Santa Ana College mainly use the Pfizer vaccine.

But the Santa Ana site closes Saturday temporarily because of the low inventory, after just opening Tuesday. The reopening date of the Santa Ana College location will be determined by supply of the Pfizer vaccine, according to a county press release.

That leaves the only POD open in South County.

Soka University will remain open to provide a second-dose Pfizer vaccine, supply permitting, officials said.

RELATED: Orange County's COVID-19 vaccination super site opens at Soka University in Aliso Viejo

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Orange County's second COVID-19 vaccination super site opened Saturday, drawing hundreds of residents to get their shots, including many vulnerable seniors.

Santa Ana Mayor Vicente Sarmiento said he understands weather plays a role, but he'll work to ensure the needs of his community aren't ignored.

"Delivery of vaccines available shouldn't be concentrated in one part of the county, whether it's South County, North County or Central," Sarmiento said. "It should be an equal distribution, or better yet it should be really where the need is the highest.

"In other words, where the positivity cases are still high, and we know that's in Central County and specifically in Santa Ana."

Some residents who signed up for an appointment Thursday at Disneyland were frustrated, saying they weren't notified of the temporary closure.

Debra Brooks was scheduled to get her second dose of the Moderna vaccine in the morning. She said she wasn't told beforehand of the closure.

She now waits to hear where she can go for her second dose of the vaccine.

"I'm not worried about it if I get it on time, but if they can't reschedule me within the six week window then I'm very worried," Brooks said.

The county says rescheduling information will come through Othena, the Orange County Health Care Agency's platform used for scheduling COVID-19 vaccinations.

Severe weather across the country has also effected delivery for the city of Los Angeles. More than 12,000 vaccination appointments scheduled for Friday in the city will be delayed because of the bad weather, Mayor Eric Garcetti said Thursday afternoon.
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