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CDPH Holds December Week of Action to Mark Anniversary of COVID-19 Vaccine and Help Prevent Winter Surge  

Date: December 15, 2021
Number: NR21-356

SACRAMENTO – The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is hosting a week of action from December 13 -17 to strongly encourage Californians to take the steps necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19 during the holidays, including getting vaccinated or boosted if they haven't already done so and following the state's recently announced indoor masking and testing requirements. California has been a leader in the nation's vaccination efforts, administering more than 62 million doses since the first dose was administered in the state on December 14, 2020. As the nation braces for an increase in case rates and hospitalizations this winter, some parts of the state that continue to have low vaccination rates are experiencing higher rates of transmission, placing individuals and communities at greater risk for COVID-19.

CDPH's Vaccinate ALL 58 campaign and local partners will host a series of events and activities in vulnerable communities throughout the week promoting the state's public health measures, harm reduction best practices, and whole family vaccinations for Californians aged 5 and older and boosters for everyone now eligible. CDPH's week of action and public health measures coincide with a 14 percent increase in COVID-19-related hospitalizations since the Thanksgiving holiday.

"Many of our hospitals are at a tipping point, and even a small winter surge can have serious consequences for our health care system," said Dr. Tomás J. Aragón, CDPH Director and State Public Health Officer. "By broadening the mask requirement to be universal, we have 30 days to slow the spread of COVID-19 and help prevent the devastating impact on our hospitals, healthcare workers, and patients that we experienced during last winter's deadly surge. We are urging all Californians to get fully vaccinated and boosted, wear their masks in all indoor public settings, get tested if exposed, have symptoms or when traveling, and to stay home when feeling sick. Together, our collective actions can help save lives and protect access and quality healthcare this holiday season and keep the state's fight against this virus strong in 2022."

California remains focused on increasing vaccine accessibility and outreach to vulnerable communities. CDPH and community partners will host mobile vaccination clinics and conduct outreach during the week to motivate all eligible Californians to get fully vaccinated, boosted and tested if they have been exposed or have symptoms. Prominent California public health officials and leading medical experts will also discuss the importance of full family vaccination with media and online platforms around the state.

The week of action is part of California's ongoing commitment to combatting the pandemic. The state's Vaccinate ALL 58 campaign will launch new creative content ahead of the holidays. The campaign is also continuing its robust partnerships with community-based organizations, working closely with trusted messengers to address vaccine hesitancy through door knocking and outreach, scheduling appointments, and providing transportation options. So far, the state's Community-Based Organization network has connected with more than three million Californians through phone banking, canvased over 700,000 households, and has facilitated or referred over one million appointments in hardest-hit communities throughout the state.

The COVID-19 vaccine and boosters are free for all Californians regardless of insurance and immigration status. Californians can visit or call 1-833-422-4255 to make an appointment or find a walk-in clinic and learn more about eligibility.

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