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Excitement at UC Irvine Med Center As First OC Health Workers Get Vaccinated

A pharmacist from UCI Health preps a COVID-19 vaccine for injection. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)
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Orange County got its first doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine this morning. The first 10 employees to get vaccinated at UC Irvine Medical Center in Orange were nurses, doctors, and custodial workers.

Staff cheered after every vaccination.

Erik Mara gets vaccinated at UCI Medical Center. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)

Erik Mara was the second one to get the shot. A respiratory therapist who recently recovered from COVID-19, he expressed the relief and hope many were feeling.

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“Knowing the fact that the vaccine is here, you feel more assured. It’s going to decrease the numbers of Covid in the near future and that's what we’re hoping. To be honest with you, our hospital right now — we have no beds.”

UCI Medical Center received an initial batch of nearly 3,000 doses today.

It plans to have vaccinated 2,000 employees by Sunday.


Here's a look at longer-term trends in the county. To see more, visit our California COVID-19 Tracker and choose Orange County or any other California county that interests you. These numbers are current as of Tuesday, Dec. 15:


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