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Road To Recovery: Stanislaus County Opens Up Vaccines To Those 16 And Up

MODESTO (CBS13) - It was a big step forward across California on the road to recovery from the pandemic as anyone 50 and up was made eligible to get the vaccine as of Thursday.

But Stanislaus County expanded even further, offering the shot to those 16 and up, two weeks ahead of California's plans.

"I'm just excited," said Joaquin Chavez-Ayala, 19.

On Thursday, Chavez-Ayala didn't have to wait long to get his first vaccine. Some people in attendance said appointments took no more than 30 minutes from waiting in line to getting a band-aid.

"You walk up, they tell you where to sit and they inject you and have you wait for fifteen minutes," said Anthony Gray from Modesto.

About 70 percent of the vaccines available go to booked appointments online, while the remaining 30 percent go to walk-in appointments. As of Thursday morning, every appointment through the clinic was full.

California's online appointment system, My Turn, had trouble scheduling younger adults, at first not recognizing them as eligible. That's why county health officials said they'll always have walk-in availability.

"Once we all get it we can go back to some normalcy," said Ayala.

Now the question is, will there be enough to go around? While the age limit is dropped, the county doesn't expect to immediately have enough for everyone to get a shot.

The county has about 14,000 doses to give out at clinics through Saturday.

"I'm feeling pretty hopeful about how things will turn out," said Ayala.

Hope and a return to life are what some tell CBS13 they're now leaving the clinic with.

Officials said 620 appointments were booked for Thursday. People who don't live in Stanislaus County have been showing up and have been turned away.

To be eligible, you must be a county resident 16 and over. Also, if you work in Stanislaus but live in another county, you may be eligible.

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