Supervisor Nora Vargas (left) and Chula Vista Mayor Mary Salas at the new vaccination super center shortly before its opening. Courtesy of the mayor’s office

San Diego County public health officials expressed cautious optimism Thursday about the pace of COVID-19 vaccinations as 173,000 more doses were shipped and a second super center opened in the South Bay.

Supervisor Nathan Fletcher reported 29,000 people, or 1% of the county population 16 and older, have received two doses and are fully vaccinated. Another 153,000 people have received a first dose.

He predicted 250,000 doses will have been administrated in the county by the end of January, calling the numbers “in many regards very good news around vaccine distribution.”

And he said the county has been shipped 173,000 more doses in the past 48 hours.

“There is reason to be cautiously optimistic,” he said at a media briefing, noting that healthcare systems have begun vaccinating their members and daily case rates are beginning to fall.

Sharp Healthcare opened the county’s second vaccination super station in the old Sears building at 565 Broadway in Chula Vista. The center will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily and has the capacity to administer 5,000 doses daily.

Fletcher said the county plans to open additional centers in east county and north county by Feb. 1. In addition, there are 10 other locations where the county is administering vaccines.

The county’s vaccination centers are only accepting healthcare workers and residents 75 and older. Appointments are required, and can be made online . Seniors who don’t have access to a computer can call 211.

In addition to the county’s vaccination efforts, healthcare systems including Sharp, Scripps Health and U.C. San Diego Health are beginning to vaccinate their members aged 65 and older. Appointments should be made directly with a healthcare provider.

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