VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. - A long line of people was seen at Durely Park in Oxnard Monday morning where Ventura County Public Health set up a pop-up vaccine clinic for residents.
However, local health officials said they are noticing a drop in people signing up to get vaccinated due to what doctors call "vaccine hesitancy."
“Usually we fill up our open vaccination appointments within an hour of Monday morning start, and this morning we are a couple of hours out and we had not completely filled up,” said Ventura County Public Health Officer Dr. Robert Levin.
But 16-year-old Jr Cruz from Oxnard said he wasn't hesitant at all. “Not at all because it is just going to help me and my family. Just to keep my whole family safe."
The vaccines are now available to those 16 and older, but Cruz said many kids his age are not getting it yet.
“I feel like most of them aren’t, but at the same time a lot of them that do take care of themselves and care for the family are,” said Cruz.
“We’re seeing it probably earlier than we expected it. We vaccinated a little over 50% of our population with first doses of vaccine. I would love to get to 80 or 85%,” said Levin.
Health experts think the hesitation is coming from misinformation.
“Some people out there are saying that the vaccine causes sterility, which is absolutely ridiculous,” said Levin.
Ventura County leaders and Public Health officials are now working on ways to reach out to those who haven’t been vaccinated.
“We are going to look at all of the different sub-groups in our county and try to find a voice that they trust to address those concerns and to push to get the vaccine,” said Levin.
For a breakdown of daily COVID-19 cases in Ventura County, click here.