Will Santa Clara County's COVID Vaccine Supply Be Enough to Meet New Demand?

This week Santa Clara County received an extra 300,000 doses from the federal government as vaccine eligibility widened, but it's unclear just how much supply will continue to arrive in the coming weeks.

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An influx of hundreds of thousands of unexpected doses allowed the Bay Area's biggest county to add new appointments just as eligibility for the COVID vaccine widened.

But with vaccine supply fluctuating on a week-to week basis, Santa Clara County officials are reminding those still looking for a shot to remain patient.

Friday was another busy day at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara with thousands of people lining up for their COVID-19 vaccine. If supply holds, Levi's Stadium could be vaccinating nearly 15,000 people a day until everyone who wants a shot can get one.

Thousands of people across the Bay Area were able to get their first COVID-19 vaccines Friday. For those who are still waiting, officials are asking for your patients as supply goes up and down on a weekly basis. Ian Cull reports.

Receiving the vaccine on Friday offered a sense of relief for Santa Clara resident Asim, who has had to go into his work office during the pandemic.

"Now that it's happening, it's more of a relief," Asim said. "My parents have gotten vaccinated too, so now I can go visit them."

For others who received a vaccine Friday, it marked a unique way to celebrate a milestone. Brian Lee and his wife attended their vaccine appointments to ring in their wedding anniversary.

"It's kind of exciting and getting back to normal life," said Lee, a resident of San Jose.

But with every Californian 16 or older now eligible for the vaccine, the looming question is whether we have enough supply to meet the new demand.

"We're seeing a lot of interest," Santa Clara County COVID Vaccine Officer Dr. Marty Fenstersheib said. "The demand is high. Luckily we have a little bit more vaccine now.

Fenstersheib said it is hard to predict the vaccine supply for each week. This week marked a prime example when the federal government supplied an unexpected 300,000 vaccine doses to the county.

Next week, Santa Clara County is expecting just over 70,000 vaccines doses from the state, but said that number could go up again.

"I think the bottom line is we have no control over the supply that comes in on a weekly basis," Fenstersheib said.

County officials are advising people to stay patient when hunting for a vaccine appointment.

"People need to be persistent and keep checking back and not get frustrated," Fenstersheib said. "If there's not one today, there will be one tomorrow or in a few days."

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