FEMA's COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Update
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FEMA COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Update (March 1, 2021)

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In alignment with President Biden's plan to respond to COVID-19 , FEMA will work with other federal agencies to coordinate with state, tribal and territorial authorities and private sector partners and others to assist, augment and expedite vaccinations in the United States.

Key Message FEMA Advisory: FEMA COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Update (March 1, 2021)

FEMA Advisory: FEMA COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Update (February 24, 2021)

FEMA Advisory

FEMA COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Update  

In alignment with President Biden's plan to respond to COVID-19 , FEMA will work with other federal agencies to coordinate with state, tribal and territorial authorities and private sector partners and others to assist, augment and expedite vaccinations in the United States.

Key Messages

  • As of Feb. 23, FEMA has provided more than $3.81 billion to 35 states, Washington D.C., three tribes and five territories for expenses related to COVID-19 vaccination at 100% federal cost share. These funds cover critical supplies, staffing, training and transportation needs that support increased vaccination efforts.
  • FEMA is committed to the equitable distribution of vaccines and ensuring every person who wants a vaccine can get one. We're working with state, tribal and territorial partners and analyzing data from the CDC and U.S. Census Bureau to locate Community Vaccination Centers pilot program sites to reach underserved populations.
  • Earlier this month, two Community Vaccination Centers opened in California. This week, sites are opening in New York and Texas. Additional pilot sites are opening soon, including four sites in Florida, four in New York and one in Philadelphia.
  • Even as FEMA is focused on supporting vaccination distribution efforts, the agency is supporting multiple disasters, including the disaster declaration for Texas . Since the Feb. 19 declaration, we've awarded more than $5.7 million dollars to survivors. This assistance can help with temporary housing and home repairs and other resources to help eligible individuals and business owners start the recovery process.

FEMA and Other Federal Agencies Are Supporting Vaccination Centers

  • As of Feb. 23, FEMA has deployed 1,719 staff across the nation to support the vaccination mission. A National Incident Management Assistance Team has deployed to Albany, New York to support the state's vaccination program.
  • FEMA Corps teams are supporting vaccination efforts in New Jersey and Kentucky.
  • On Feb 5, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas activated the DHS Surge Capacity Force for vaccination support operations. The surge force is composed of federal employees from other federal agencies to augment FEMA's workforce. 25 surge members are in Dover, Delaware and 44 are en route to New Jersey to support vaccination efforts.
  • FEMA published a Community Vaccination Centers Playbook that establishes guidance for providing federal support to state, tribal and territorial Community Vaccination Centers. Playbook information includes interagency coordination, resource support, facility setup and other requirements for consideration.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is supporting future planning for community vaccination centers using their subject matter experts, alongside FEMA and state assessments teams, assessing potential new site locations and providing contracting capability to establish new sites.
  • The U.S. National Guard Bureau is providing 1,198 vaccinators to 409 vaccination centers.
  • Additionally, 1,572 interagency vaccinators have deployed to Arizona, California, Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Navajo Nation, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma and Texas. More than 900 additional vaccinators are awaiting assignment.
  • The U.S. Coast Guard has deployed 40 members to Hawaii, New Jersey and Oklahoma to support vaccination services.
  • Department of Defense Vaccine Support teams are in California, New Jersey, New York and Texas. Additional teams are scheduled to arrive in Florida, Pennsylvania and the U.S. Virgin Islands next week.

Ensuring Equitable Vaccine Access

  • President Biden announced the formation of a task force to address and prevent COVID-19 health inequities and ensure an equitable response to the pandemic.
  • FEMA has civil rights advisors and disability integration specialists in each of FEMAs regions to advise state, local, tribal and territorial governments and other partners. Additional disability integration advisors and civil rights advisors are deploying to support these efforts.   
  • FEMA established a Civil Rights Advisory Group to proactively consider and promptly resolve civil rights concerns and help ensure equity in the allocation of scarce resources including future vaccine allocation. FEMA published “Ensuring Equitable Vaccine Access” to define FEMA's commitment to equity and describe the Civil Rights Advisory Group.
  • FEMA developed a Civil Rights Checklist to assist state, tribal and territorial partners in understanding and fulfilling their obligations to provide access to vaccine-related programs, activities and services in a nondiscriminatory manner. The agency is also coordinating translation and interpretation services.

Additional Vaccination Programs

As the federal government works to increase the supply of vaccine to jurisdictions, FEMA is taking steps to build the infrastructure so it can adapt when vaccine supply is more readily available.

Standard vaccine delivery for state allocations has increased week-over-week; there has been a 28% increase in allocations to jurisdictions since Jan. 20.

In addition to community vaccination centers, federal pilot sites, sites already established by states, tribes and territories, additional federally allocated vaccines will be administered across the country via:

  • The Federal Retail Pharmacy Program, which is a partnership between the federal government, states and territories, and national and independent pharmacy networks across the United States.
  • Federally Qualified Health Centers such as community health centers.
  • Federal entities, including the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the Indian Health Service.

Community Vaccination Center Pilot Partnerships

  • FEMA, in coordination with CDC and other federal partners, has developed tailorable packages to support establishment of Community Vaccination Centers in partnership with states, local, tribal and territorial governments.
  • The sites FEMA is piloting in locations such as California, New York and Texas are selected based on data analysis including the CDC's Social Vulnerability Index and other Census data as well as input from our state and local partners. Input also includes localized considerations such as the existing deployment of resources and feedback from state public health experts.
  • This week, vaccination centers opened in the New York City boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens and in Dallas and Houston, Texas. One additional center is expected to open in Arlington, Texas this week. Two centers opened in Los Angeles and Oakland, California last week.
  • FEMA is working with state governments to open additional sites next week:
    • In Florida: Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando and Tampa.
    • In New York: Albany, Buffalo, Rochester and Yonkers.
    • In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Vaccine Guidance

  • According to CDC, as of Feb. 23, more than 65 million vaccine doses have been administered. More than 82.1 million vaccine doses have been distributed to locations across the country.
  • Today and tomorrow, CDC is hosting a virtual National Forum on COVID-19 Vaccines for representatives from state, local tribal and territorial leaders, healthcare practitioners and community, education, media and private sector leaders who are part of the vaccination efforts.
  • The forum will convene people from across the country who are part of vaccination efforts to advance the goals of the National Strategy for the COVID-19 Response and Pandemic Preparedness .
  • The CDC Vaccine Task Force and Data Analysis & Visualization Task Force launched the CDC COVID Data Tracker Vaccinations Trends page . This page includes the overall trends of vaccinations over time in the US and for the Federal Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program.
  • Additionally, the CDC Vaccine Task Force is rolling out vaccine confidence consultations for interested jurisdictions. To request this service, interested jurisdictions can send an email to . CDC also has online tips for building vaccine confidence .

Additional FEMA Support

  • On Feb. 2, President Biden directed FEMA to retroactively reimburse states for 100% of their costs for eligible emergency protective measures i ncluding masks, gloves, emergency feeding actions, sheltering at risk populations and mobilization of the National Guard .
  • President's directive also directs FEMA to expand the activities eligible for reimbursement for work conducted after Jan. 21, 2021 and until Sept. 30, 2021 . Reimbursement applies to eligible costs to support the safe opening and operation of eligible schools, child-care facilities, healthcare facilities, non-congregate shelters, domestic violence shelters, transit systems and other eligible applicants incurred after Jan. 21.  
  • CDC has released updated guidance on how people can make sure their mask works the best it can , such as wearing a cloth mask over a medical mask. The CDC worked with the Ad Council to produce public service announcements to encourage and normalize the consistent use of masks .
  • On Feb. 5,  Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin approved 1,110 active duty troops to support vaccination centers. An additional 3,610 active duty troops were approved on Feb. 12. FEMA will partner with the Department of Defense for additional resources at vaccination centers throughout the country as needed.
  • Providing funding to states, tribes and territories is an Administration priority. After a request is submitted, reviewed and validated, FEMA can expedite reimbursement for eligible emergency work projects to ensure resources are available to support vaccine distribution and administration.
  • As of Feb. 23, the Disaster Relief Fund balance is more than $12.7 billion. These funds will support continued response to COVID-19, including expanded vaccination efforts across the country by providing financial assistance to governments and other eligible applicants for vaccination efforts as well as personal protective equipment, alternative care sites and durable medical equipment.
  • The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 appropriates $2 billion to FEMA to provide financial assistance to households for COVID-19-related funeral expenses at a 100% federal cost. Earlier this month, FEMA awarded a contract to help administer the program. At this time, the Funeral Assistance Program is still in development. FEMA will be working with the contractor on training staff and finalizing implementation of the program over the next several weeks.

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