El Camino Health has opened a new vaccination center inside one of LinkedIn's tech offices in Sunnyvale, capable of providing 3,000 shots per day and expanding availability of the COVID-19 vaccine in northern Santa Clara County.
Officials at El Camino Health, which operates El Camino Hospital in Mountain View, say the mass vaccination site had a soft opening on March 15 but is officially kicking off this month, and will have appointments available to the general public based on vaccine availability. The tech office, located at 1030 W. Maude Ave., is adjacent to LinkedIn's Mountain View campus and had been unoccupied prior to becoming a vaccination site.
Though smaller than health care giants like Kaiser Permanente and Sutter Health, El Camino has provided more than 25,000 vaccinations to the community -- mostly through a San Jose outpatient site capable of doing 600 shots per day, according to Mark Adams, chief medical officer for El Camino. The launch of the Sunnyvale vaccination center significantly increases the health care provider's presence in the regional push to immunize as many residents as possible.
Adams said the hope is that the new location, off of Highway 237 and near public transit, will encourage underserved residents to get the vaccine. California has pushed in recent months to expand availability of the vaccine to low-income and minority communities, which have been hardest hit by the virus yet have some of the lowest vaccination rates to date.
LinkedIn agreed to provide the space, which is leased from Synopsys but remains empty due to COVID-19 and the company's work from home policy, while El Camino Health operates the site. Adams said the location can handle up to 3,000 vaccinations per day, but the actual number is largely metered by its allocation from Santa Clara County and more recently Blue Shield, which manages the state's COVID-19 vaccine distribution.
"All of this is really dependent on getting the quantity of doses from the state that we need," Adams said.
The April 1 announcement by El Camino comes as statewide vaccine eligibility expands to all residents age 50 and older, which will soon be followed by a massive increase in eligibility on April 15 for everyone age 16 and older. County health officials say there has been a strong effort to scale up capacity, but supplies allocated by the state are expected to fall well short of demand. Availability of appointments has already been a frustration for currently eligible residents seeking to get immunized.
The vaccination site is being paid for, in part, by funding from the El Camino Healthcare District, a public agency with oversight of El Camino Health. The district recently approved $1 million in funding for vaccination efforts.
Anyone interested in signing up for an appointment can go to the El Camino Health vaccine website or call 408-871-7460. No walk-ins will be permitted.