BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Californians between the ages of 16 and 50 are not eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine until April 15th, according to state guidelines. But one community clinic is changing the rules.
Clinica Sierra Vista announced Friday that anyone age 18 and up is now eligible to get vaccinated at any of their clinics.
Clinic spokesperson Tim Callahan telling 23ABC that the new their new eligibility rules are a result of having a better vaccine supply.
"We feel confident as an organization given vaccination supply from our federal partners at Health Resources and Services Administration to open up appointment requests to more patients," said Tim Calahan, Director of Communications at Clinica Sierra Vista. "We want to vaccinate as many people as possible who are requesting an appointment."
Continued Calahan: "We looked at supply and we looked at timing, and we were able to make that call and say, 'hey, we're in a good place.' We have enough vaccines, and we want to get those folks scheduled."
Callahan says about 1,000 people are on the clinic's vaccination schedule, which is about a week and a half's worth of shots. This implies if anyone 18 years or older schedules a vaccination at the clinic, their expected appointment time would be around the time the state's eligibility rules open.
Clinica Sierra Vista locations in Delano and Lamont are holding special free vaccine clinics on Friday. Officials say the new eligibility rules apply at those events. No appointments are required, and walk-ins are encouraged.
TUNE IN TONIGHT TO 23ABC NEWS @ 5 as we learn more.