COVID Vaccine Site Opens At VTA Light Rail Station in San Jose

Len Ramirez reports on new vaccination site opening at VTA's Santa Teresa Station (5-3-2021)

Video Transcript

- And in Santa Clara County now, you don't even have to leave the light rail station to get a shot. KPIX Len Ramirez is in San Jose, where they're bringing the vaccine to the people.

LEN RAMIREZ: Well, this is all part of the county's push to come out to where the people are to get more folks vaccinated. And it's true, you can step off a light rail train and walk straight across the parking lot and get a vaccination. But a lot of people are also finding it very convenient to just drive-through.

Although ridership is down on the light rail system because of COVID, VTA trains and one train station are stepping up in the push to get people vaccinated.

SERGIO JIMENEZ: This is just such a prime location that everyone's going to be able to drive-in if they see the sign, right? To say, let's just pop-in and get vaccinated.

LEN RAMIREZ: The VTA turned 900 mostly unused parking spots at at Santa Teresa light rail park and ride lot into the latest walk up and drive-through COVID vaccination site. No appointment needed. Carmen Morino came through the site in just a few minutes and got her second dose.

CARMEN MARINO: Super convenient. I love that you can stay in your car.

LEN RAMIREZ: In its first full week of operation, the site expects to administer between 500 and 1,000 shots a day. People can ride a VTA train to the station for free and walk-in or drive-through. It's part of the push to remove barriers and give everyone who's eligible 16 and above access to the vaccine. The site's medical director says the convenience factor is already helping reluctant people.

VICTOR SALAZAR: They feel comfortable being in the car. We experience having families coming to get the vaccine. Not only one person but families.

- Don't wait.

LEN RAMIREZ: Marisol Valenzuela was one of those who was holding out until COVID hit home and the beloved aunt came down with the virus.

MARISOL VALENZUELA: Here I am with my first dose. I'm putting a timer. I have two more minutes to see how I'm feeling, and I'm very grateful I got it done because, you know, there was no more time for waiting.

LEN RAMIREZ: Now this is now a permanent location and will be here for the foreseeable future. Right now, the hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Although, we did see a lot of people in line at 5:00. It does seem to be a popular spot and they did stay open until every car in line got a vaccination. Reporting live in San Jose, Len Ramirez, KPIX 5.