FEMA Supports Vaccine Distribution: COVID-19 Response Update

Release Date Release Number

WASHINGTON -- FEMA continues working with our partners -- including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other federal agencies – along with state, tribal and territorial authorities, private sector partners and others to assist, augment and expedite vaccinations in the United States.

In coordination with our federal partners, FEMA is assisting in making vaccine information readily available and has launched a Vaccine Support page to keep the public informed of the agency’s support of the White House COVID-19 Response Plan and information on how to get vaccinated. The agency is also working with the Ad Council to encourage hesitant or underrepresented Americans to get vaccinated. This research-driven public education campaign provides federal, non-profit, and medical stakeholders with insights and communications strategies to tailor communications to reach diverse audiences.

As of Jan. 28, nine federally supported sites are operational in Arizona, Nevada, Texas and Washington. FEMA has deployed staff to nine states to support vaccination centers with personnel and technical assistance.

Additional staff across the country are supporting virtually, while the U.S. National Guard Bureau is providing staffing, administrative and logistics support to vaccines sites in 22 states. Additionally, the U.S.  Coast Guard has deployed 18 reservists and is identifying 1,000 more for future missions.

Federal Funding to Accelerate State Vaccine Efforts

FEMA will provide reimbursement to states, local, tribal and territorial governments and the District of Columbia for the use of their National Guard to respond to COVID-19 and other assistance, which may include support to vaccination distribution and administration, at a 100% cost share until Sept. 30, 2021. Additionally, FEMA is supporting COVID-19 vaccine distribution by providing reimbursement to governments for costs associated with vaccine distribution and administration.

Providing funding to states, tribes and territories is an Administration priority. After a request is submitted, FEMA expedites reimbursement for eligible emergency work projects to ensure resources are available to support vaccine distribution and administration.

These funds cover emergency protective measures to include:

  • Supplies and commodities needed to safely store and administer the vaccine.

  • Transportation support and reasonable, necessary security for refrigerated trucks and support for leasing space to store and/or administer vaccines, including utilities, maintenance and security.

  • Medical and support staff, including onsite infection control measures, personal protective equipment for staff, cloth face coverings for patients, temperature scanners, physical barriers and disinfection of the facility in accordance with CDC guidance.

  • Dissemination of public information and communication regarding vaccinations.

The costs of purchasing the vaccine and support kits are not covered by these obligations and do not duplicate any HHS funding.

FEMA and Other Federal Agencies are Supporting and Establishing Vaccine Sites

To reach underserved and rural communities, FEMA, in collaboration with federal partners, will coordinate efforts to establish and support fixed facilities and establishing pop-up or temporary vaccination sites and mobile vaccination clinics. FEMA will coordinate with other federal agencies to meet state, tribal and territory needs. FEMA is providing support to established vaccination locations, establish new community vaccination centers and support National Guard operations to expand access to vaccines. The U.S. National Guard Bureau is providing administrative and logistics support to vaccines sites in 22 states.

Vaccine Guidance

Because the supply of COVID-19 vaccine in the United States is limited, CDC is providing recommendations to federal, state, and local governments about who should be vaccinated first. CDC’s recommendations are based on those of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, an independent panel of medical and health experts. Each state has its own plan for deciding which groups of people will be vaccinated first. You can contact your state health department for more information on its plan for COVID-19 vaccination.

The vaccine is not a perfect fix. Everyone should continue to practice other precautions like wearing a mask, maintaining physical distance, handwashing and other hygiene measures until public health officials say otherwise.

FEMA is committed to ensuring every American who wants a vaccine can get one.


Last updated