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Disneyland to become mass coronavirus vaccination site

Orange County officials announced Disneyland will become a regional vaccination site this week.
/ Source: TODAY

Disneyland is set to become a mass vaccination site as COVID-19 cases continue to surge to overwhelming levels in California.

Disneyland Resort was designated by officials on Monday as Orange County's first Super Point-of-Dispensing (POD) site for vaccination distribution.

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Disneyland in Anaheim, California, is being opened as a mass vaccination site during the pandemic. Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times via Getty Imag

The theme park in Anaheim has been closed since the pandemic began in March and has not reopened despite pleas to public authorities to resume welcoming guests after being barred by state health officials.

The site will have the capacity to give thousands of vaccinations each day and increase the efficiency of the vaccine distribution, officials said in a news release.

The Disneyland location will be one of five regional Super PODs and will be operational later this week. Vaccinations are currently available to Orange County residents and those who work in the county who are part of Phase 1a, all tiers, which includes law enforcement, first responders and those 75 and older.

Those eligible have to make an appointment to get the vaccine and bring identification and documentation to the site proving that they are eligible to receive it. Distribution will be limited at first and increased over time due to the limited initial supply of COVID-19 vaccines, officials said.

"Coronavirus has brought both a public health crisis and economic devastation," Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu said in the news release. “With this super site, we will begin to overcome both. Every vaccination done in Anaheim will help to save lives and speed the reopening and recovery of our city.”

The county has a goal of completing all vaccinations by July 4.

Another Super POD is being set up in Dodger Stadium, the home of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The stadium is switching over from administering coronavirus tests to giving vaccinations this week with a goal of being able to vaccinate up to 12,000 people a day once it's up and running, city officials announced Monday.

Around 1 million coronavirus tests have been given at Dodger Stadium since May, according to NBC Los Angeles.

In Northern California, state and local officials are in discussions to launch a drive-thru vaccination site at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, according to NBC Bay Area. The Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority is expected to vote Friday on opening the home of the Oakland A's as a vaccination site.

Mass vaccination sites are also being planned for Petco Park, the home of the San Diego Padres, and the Cal Expo site in Sacramento, according to The Associated Press.

Deaths from COVID-19 in California passed 30,000 on Monday, the third-most of any state behind New York and Texas, and a record 1,163 deaths this past weekend were reported.

The state has averaged 494 deaths per day over the last week, an increase of 114.2% from two weeks ago, and there are 21,668 people hospitalized with the coronavirus, 10% more than two weeks ago, according to the Los Angeles Times. The state has administered 783,476 shots of the vaccine through Monday, per the Los Angeles Times.