FEMA Supports Vaccine Distribution: COVID-19 Response Update

Release Date Release Number
Release Date:
February 1, 2021

WASHINGTON -- FEMA has now obligated more than $1.7 billion to states, tribes and territories, and Washington, D.C., for vaccination sites and deployed more than 300 staff to 10 states and one territory to support vaccination centers with personnel and technical assistance. Additional staff across the country are supporting virtually.  

In the last 48 hours, the following obligations over $1 million were made:

  • $51.6 million to Alabama.
  • $5.9 million to California.
  • $245 million to Florida.
  • $104.6 million to Georgia.
  • $46.9 million to Kentucky.
  • $15 million to Minnesota.
  • $32 million to Mississippi.
  • $103 million to North Carolina.
  • $2.5 million to South Carolina.
  • $68.5 million to Tennessee.
  • $3.2 million to Virginia.
  • $47 million to Wisconsin.

As of Jan. 31, 89 federally supported sites are operational across the country. The U.S. National Guard Bureau is providing 844 vaccinators, administrative and logistics support to 303 vaccine sites in 40 states, while the  U.S. Coast Guard has deployed 18 reservists to support Oklahoma.

As the number of states with obligations increases, we will work alongside other federal agencies to provide federal support for critical staffing, supplies and other shortfalls that can help get more Americans vaccinated.

Vaccine Site Classifications

Federal vaccine site support enables a new site to open, or an existing site to remain open. Vaccine site types, locations and capacity are decided at the state, local, tribal and territorial (SLTT) government level. Depending on the need, there are a variety of site types and sizes available to support vaccine efforts. Additionally, there are different levels of federal support, ranging from completely locally run to sites fully funded by the federal government.

Federal Funding to Accelerate Vaccine Efforts

FEMA is supporting vaccination sites by providing expedited financial assistance, federal equipment and supplies, and deploying federal personnel to states, tribes, territories and other eligible applicants for vaccination efforts. Providing funding to states, tribes and territories is an Administration priority. After a request is submitted and validated, FEMA expedites reimbursement for eligible emergency work projects to ensure resources are available to support vaccine distribution and administration.

This assistance is processed when a request is submitted. FEMA will reimburse 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.

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

Federal Coordination to Identify and Fill Resource Gaps

FEMA is working closely with state, local, tribal and territorial governments to fill gaps that local health officials have identified.  “FEMA COVID-19 Vaccination Planning FAQ,”  was published by FEMA to assist governments with their vaccine distribution efforts and reimbursements for associated costs.

FEMA will work with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and other federal agencies to ensure a coordinated approach to using Defense Production Act authorities wherever necessary so private sector companies can increase vaccine supply and spur vaccine manufacturing.  

Vaccine Guidance

FEMA is 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.

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.

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

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