Today, Governor Tom Wolf and members of the COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force announced another bi-partisan effort to complete COVID phase 1A vaccinations first, set up mass vaccination clinics with county-supplied plans to inform allocations, and vaccinate frontline workers.
The decisions by the task force focus on three key areas:
- Getting first dose appointments for everyone who wants a vaccine in Phase 1A scheduled by March 31st. To help accomplish this goal, Acting Secretary of Health Alison Beam will issue an order requiring providers to use all reasonable efforts to meet this goal of scheduling all 1A appointments by the end of the month. To date, all Phase 1A eligible Pennsylvanians with a first dose now tops 3 million. More than 72,000 Pennsylvanians are being vaccinated every day.
- Establishing Regional Vaccination Clinics using a portion of the weekly allocation of Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses after the completion of the special initiative to vaccinate teachers, school staff, and child care workers, to be made available to regions and counties throughout the Commonwealth.
- Targeting frontline workers using the remaining portion of J&J doses. Targeted industries include law enforcement, grocery workers, firefighters (both paid and volunteer), and food and agriculture workers.
The Governor’s goal in establishing special vaccination initiatives is to help protect frontline, essential workers and their communities. These are the Pennsylvanians who have no choice but to continue serving our commonwealth during this pandemic. These workers, their families, and entire communities will be safe if they are vaccinated as quickly as possible. This new special initiative uses J&J to target frontline workers, allowing the commonwealth to make progress in vaccinating a critical workforce, while maintaining the current provider network with access to Moderna and Pfizer for our seniors and other vulnerable populations in Phase 1A.
Using the J&J supply to support locally planned and facilitated mass vaccination sites, as well as quickly completing vaccine missions for critical frontline workers means more shots in arms while helping our seniors secure appointments.
The Governor also explained the Task Force is still working through the details of the special initiatives and will announce more information before additional Johnson & Johnson allocations become available on March 28th. The Commonwealth will work with county and local partners to get infrastructure in place to vaccinate these populations and prepare for an increase in vaccine allocations.
Frequently asked questions about this announcement and the rollout will be available on the Governor’s website governor.pa.govthis afternoon. Thank you.