U.S. President Joseph R. Biden Jr. on Tuesday announced a new goal for 70% of the U.S. adult population to have one vaccine shot and 160 million U.S. adults to be fully vaccinated by July 4.
The President announced that he is directing tens of thousands of pharmacies in the federal pharmacy program to offer walk-in appointments; redirecting Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) resources to support more pop-up clinics, smaller community vaccination sites, and more mobile clinics; shipping new allocations of the vaccine to rural health clinics across the country; and providing additional funding to help communities do outreach and engagement to help get people vaccinated.
In the next phase of the vaccination campaign, the Biden administration is making getting vaccinated more accessible than ever before, continuing to increase people’s confidence in the vaccines and ensuring that everyone is reached in the response.
Speaking from the White House, President Biden announced an effort to get the nation’s adolescents vaccinated as soon as possible, if a vaccine gains authorization for this age group from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is recommended for use by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Biden said his administration is also deploying the expertise of the Office of the Surgeon General, CDC, National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other clinical leaders to help answer questions parents and teens may have about vaccination.
The President announced the following actions to help in the effort to administer at least one shot to 70% of the U.S. adult population by July 4, according to a fact sheet released by the White House
Make Access to Vaccinations Even More Convenient. The President will announce new efforts to make vaccinations more convenient and more accessible for Americans across the country by:
Increasing Walk-In Vaccinations at Local Pharmacies Across the Nation: The Administration will direct federal pharmacy partners, including national and independent pharmacies across the country, to offer walk-in vaccinations. The Administration will also encourage all states to offer walk-in options at state vaccination sites to make it easier to get vaccinated.
Moving to Smaller, Community-Based and Mobile Vaccination Clinics: FEMA will support smaller pop-up vaccination clinics and increase the number of active mobile units to meet people where they are—with a focus on the hardest-to-reach individuals. The agency will couple those efforts with federal support for community engagement to continue to increase uptake. These efforts build on landmark accomplishments over the course of the Administration’s first 100 days, in which the federal government set up vaccination infrastructure and capacity that did not previously exist.
Support Community Vaccine Education and Local Outreach Efforts. The President will announce additional support for community-based organizations as well as states to educate local communities about the vaccine and vaccination availability by:
Expanding the Workforce of Community-Based Organizations: The President will announce nearly $250 million in two funding opportunities for community-based organizations to hire and mobilize community outreach workers, community health workers, social support specialists, and others to increase vaccine access for the hardest-hit and highest-risk communities through high-touch, on-the-ground outreach. These workers will build confidence by answering individual questions about vaccination, help make vaccine appointments, and assist with transportation, child care arrangements, or other needs to get to individuals to their vaccination appointments. The President has committed to support hiring workers from the vulnerable communities they will serve to ensure they create trust and are as effective as possible in addressing persistent racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic health inequities. The first of two funding opportunities will be released today and will leverage organizations with broad geographical reach to support vulnerable and medically underserved individuals. The second funding opportunity will be released in mid-May and will focus on smaller community-based organizations.
Supporting Underserved Communities with the Tools Needed to Get Vaccinated: The President will announce more than $130 million to improve vaccine education and information, and reduce health disparities in underserved communities. Funding will support organizations with deep relationships and a long track record of commitment to support racial and ethnic minorities, rural populations, and people with disabilities, including national organizations as well as community-level organizations. Activities will include developing and disseminating accessible educational materials and toolkits; identifying barriers to vaccine uptake and opportunities for improving vaccination availability, accessibility, and acceptability; identifying and equipping trusted influential messengers through efforts like the COVID-19 Community Corps; and building partnerships between vaccination providers and the community to increase opportunities for vaccination.
Support the Next Phase of State and Local Vaccine Outreach Efforts: The President will announce that nearly $250 million will be immediately awarded to state, territorial, and select large city governments to power their next phase of outreach efforts. The administration will deploy a number of tools and resources with these funds including: a rapid Community Assessment Guide to identify and respond to vaccine education needs and develop targeted strategies for uptake in specific communities; vaccine messages and toolkits to support vaccine education and outreach; research on subpopulations; visuals for TV, print, digital advertisements; and survey data.
Provide Easier Access to Those Living in Rural Communities and Bolster Efforts to Reach Rural Americans in the Response. The President will announce new steps to vaccinate rural Americans, including:
Shipping New Allocations of Vaccine to Rural Health Clinics: The Administration will send vaccines directly to rural health clinics in some of our most underserved communities. This initiative will include clinics in areas with a limited number of other vaccination sites, and enhance vaccine access in rural communities across the country.
Increasing Vaccine Education and Outreach Efforts in Rural Communities: The President will announce over $100 million in American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding to approximately 4,600 rural health clinics across the country to support vaccine outreach in rural communities. This funding will be used to assist rural residents in accessing vaccinations as well as education and outreach efforts around the benefits of vaccination.
Increasing Funding for Rural Health Clinics and Hospitals to Respond to COVID-19 with Testing and Mitigation Measures: The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is providing nearly $860 million in ARP funding to help rural health clinics and rural hospitals broaden their COVID-19 testing and mitigation to slow the spread of the virus in their communities. HRSA will provide up to $100,000 per clinic to each of the 4,600 federally designated rural health clinics and up to $230,000 per hospital to 1,730 small rural hospitals to increase COVID-19 testing, expand access to testing in rural communities, and broaden efforts to respond to and mitigate the spread of the virus in ways tailored to community needs.
Launch a comprehensive plan to vaccinate the nation’s adolescents, should the FDA authorize a vaccine for younger ages. The Administration has directed states to make adolescents eligible for vaccination immediately, should the FDA choose to issue an Emergency Use Authorization of the Pfizer vaccine for individuals age 12-15. The President will challenge states to get as many adolescents vaccinated as possible with one shot by July 4, so that they can be fully vaccinated by the time school begins in the fall. To advance that effort, the Administration will launch a comprehensive strategy to make vaccinations available in more places—with a focus on pediatricians and family physicians—and to continue to build trust with teens and their parents, beginning by providing families with the medical information they need to make informed choices.