California Launches Workplace COVID-19 Vaccination Program for Employers

The state of California has launched a new initiative aimed at helping employers set up on-site COVID-19 vaccination clinics for their employees.

As vaccine uptake starts to slow down while more employees return to work, employers have been wrestling with how to get as many of their workers vaccinated as possible. Some companies are requiring staff to get vaccinated while others have been offering incentives like gift certificates to urge them to take the plunge.

Due to the complexity of organizing an on-site vaccination clinic, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has created a straightforward “Employer Vaccination Toolkit,” where an employer can seek approval for an on-site clinic or vaccination event. The site covers ways employers can promote inoculations among their staff, including COVID-19 vaccination resources and more.

Before an employer decides to host an event, they must survey staff to see who has and who has not been vaccinated and ensure they have access to proper facilities.

Infrastructure requirements

In particular, to qualify to host a vaccine clinic, the site an employer wants to use needs to meet certain “infrastructure requirements” for on-site vaccinations. There are four types of sites:

  • Indoor,
  • Outdoors covered site (such as a large tent),
  • Vaccination bus, and
  • Vaccination van.

Each must be large enough to accommodate the required number of check-in stations, vaccination stations and observation areas:

  • Check-in, screening and registration areas – Each station must be at least 6 feet from any other station.
  • Vaccination area – Spacing between vaccination stations needs to be at least 10 feet.
  • Observation area – There should be six chairs per vaccinator, spaced at least 6 feet apart.

There are also requirements for:

  • Emergency medical support
  • HVAC and temperature control requirements
  • Space for storing supplies
  • Restrooms
  • Break area for staff working the site
  • Cleaning
  • Electrical
  • Number of chairs
  • Vaccination site licensing and insurance requirements.

If you can ensure you have access to these types of facilities, you can apply to host a site using the toolkit and application process here. The site also includes information on other ways employers can promote COVID-19 vaccinations.

Here are the steps you should following in applying:

  1. Understand your employee vaccination needs:
    • What percentage of your employees need inoculation?
    • Would a worksite vaccination event help support your employees (and potentially their family members) access vaccines?
  2. Review the infrastructure requirements for a worksite mobile clinic.
  3. Submit a support request for the event:
    • Fill out the application.
    • A representative should contact you within three business days to follow up.
  4. Help your employees get vaccinated on-site on your schedule:
    • Promote the vaccination event widely.
    • Host the event on scheduled dates and times.

If an employer is too small, the CDPH can help them band together with other employers in their area to sponsor a clinic.

If approved, the CDPH will provide you with a list of local providers with which to arrange vaccinations.