With the Los Angeles Chargers taking on the San Francisco 49ers at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood Sunday night, state public health officials took on fans with vaccine incentives.
The California Department of Public Health hosted a pop-up vaccination clinic and vaccine outreach activities at the American Airlines plaza outside SoFi stadium in the hours leading up to Sunday’s game.
To encourage vaccinations, the California Department of Public Health offered a pair of tickets to the Chargers pre-season game against the San Francisco 49ers to the first 75 people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 at the pop-up clinic this weekend.
In addition to the vaccine clinic, public health officials held pre-game festivities, including games like cornhole and horseshoe, as part of the state’s “Let’s Get to Immunity” COVID-19 vaccination campaign.
Dr. Martha Dominguez, with the state Department of Public Health, said pop-up vaccination events like these are important for getting more people vaccinated.
“Getting incentivized makes their decision easier,” Dominguez said. “Right now with the delta [variant] being two times as contagious, we want to underscore the importance and the power of vaccines… We need to control the virus and the more people that are vaccinated, the sooner we can reach community immunity.”
Meanwhile, masks are now required at sports games, concerts and other large events in L.A. County, regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.
The new rule went into effect late Thursday and applies to all large outdoor events with more than 10,000 people attending, like music or food festivals, car shows, large endurance events, marathons, parades, sporting events and concerts.
Health experts say large events increase the risk of coronavirus transmission since people crowd close together for long periods of time.
“To reduce the spread of COVID-19 and the Delta variant, universal masking is now required at all outdoor mega events where thousands of people from many different communities are crowded together, often for extended periods of time,” L.A. County Health Director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement earlier this week.
People, however, can take their masks off when they’re eating or drinking, but have to promptly put them back on when they’re done, according to the updated health officer order.
Additional COVID-19 protocols will be enforced inside the stadium during Sunday’s game, including social distancing and fans having to verbally attest to vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test before being allowed to attend the event.