Quick Take:

Illuminée Studio and other local businesses are staying strong during the pandemic thanks in part to Santa Cruz County...

Hey there! Happy almost-Friday, Santa Cruz Earth Day celebrators. It’s Tulsi and Chris here filling in for Mark, who is on assignment. We’ll try our best to channel him here:

BIG NEWS ON CAMPUS: If you’re planning to attend UCSC (or any UC or Cal State campus) in the fall, it’s time to start your vaccine search if you haven’t already.
TAKING A PASS ON MyTurn: Did the state’s vaccine-finder system give you fits? You’re not alone.
PREGNANCY HEIGHTENS COVID-19 RISK: How to keep mom and baby safe, docs say? Get inoculated.

With that, to the headlines we go …

UC and Cal State systems plan to require COVID-19 vaccinations this fall

College students await vaccines
Students walk through a quiet Quarry Plaza at UC Santa Cruz in March. Credit: Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz

The University of California and California State University announced today that they intend to require COVID-19 vaccinations for all students, faculty and staff on campus properties this fall once the FDA gives formal approval to the vaccines and supplies are sufficiently available. The directive is the largest of its kind in U.S. higher education, affecting more than 1 million members of the two public university systems. More from LA Times here.

State’s ‘MyTurn’ website bypassed for most vaccine appointments

Alyssa Jenkins uses the state's MyTurn website to try to book a vaccination appointment for someone on April 19, 2021.
Alyssa Jenkins uses the state’s MyTurn website to try to book a vaccination appointment for someone on April 19, 2021. Credit: Anne Wernikoff / CalMatters

When MyTurn debuted in mid-January, it was supposed to be a one-stop-shop, a place where every Californian could register to be notified when they became eligible for the COVID vaccine and eventually make an appointment for their shot. Instead, it’s become a lightning rod for many Californians frustrated by their inability to get vaccinated quickly and return to a normal life. Read more from CalMatters here.

Pregnancy increases risk of COVID-19 complications for women and their babies

Pregnant patient
A nurse uses a nasal swab to conduct a coronavirus test on a woman who is 31 weeks pregnant. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

A study of more than 2,000 pregnant women from dozens of hospitals around the world has found that those with COVID-19 saw a significantly higher risk of death and of complications for themselves or their newborns. The study underscores that pregnancy is a major risk factor for complications involving COVID-19 — one that should be considered alongside the likes of obesity and asthma — and could help persuade more women to line up for vaccinations. Read more from the LA Times here.

More from here & elsewhere

US issues more than 115 ‘do not travel’ advisories, citing risks from COVID-19 (NPR)
Federal officials weigh extending mask mandate for mass transportation (CNN)
In Michigan, a record-breaking number of children have been hospitalized with Covid (NBC News)
India posts world record COVID cases with oxygen running out (Reuters)
Reinfection is possible but rare, data from 63 million medical records shows (Washington Post)
People are reporting ‘new’ unexpected side effects after COVID-19 vaccination — but that’s normal (Time)

Mark will be back tomorrow! He’ll see you then.

Tulsi Kamath and Chris Fusco
COVID PM stand-ins

Follow Tulsi Kamath on: Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn. Tulsi Kamath was the originator of Lookout Santa Cruz’s flagship Morning Lookout newsletter and its original Managing Editor.