California ag workers, teachers recommended to receive COVID-19 vaccine in second phase

California is close to deciding which groups will be next in line after health care workers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Once the state’s 3 million health care workers are vaccinated – which started this week with an initial allocation of 327,000 doses – the state will distribute about 8 million doses that are expected to arrive in early 2021. 


A state advisory committee made recommendations this week for which sectors should follow health care workers in the second phase. 

The recommended recipients for the second phase consists of the following groups: 

  • 1.4 million teachers and child care providers. 
  • 1.1 million emergency services providers, which includes workers who provide social services for various groups as well as police and firefighters. 
  • 3.4 million food and agriculture workers, which includes farmworkers, restaurant workers, grocers, bakers, butchers, plant nurseries, florists, sawmills, food services and pharmacies. 

All of those nearly-6 million people are considered essential workers by the state. Overall, the state has about 12 million essential workers. Those that do not make the cut for the first two waves will be next in line before the general population receives the vaccine. 

With the 327,000 previously-received doses of the Pfizer vaccine in distribution, the state expects to receive 393,900 additional doses from Pfizer, Gov. Gavin Newsom said. 

California will also be in line to receive 672,000 vaccine doses from Moderna before the end of the year. The Food and Drug Administration advisory panel voted Thursday to recommend that the Moderna Vaccine be authorized for emergency use. The FDA could approve the vaccine as early as Friday.

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