Biden's pandemic plan could enlist FEMA to operate up to 100 vaccination sites

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The Federal Emergency Management Agency could operate up to 100 COVID-19 vaccination sites within the next month as part of President Joe Biden's pandemic plan, The Washington Post reported Jan. 25. 

Under the plan, FEMA would "provide federal support to existing or new community vaccination centers and mobile clinics across the country," according to a draft form of the plan obtained by the Post. "FEMA … will mobilize thousands of clinical and nonclinical staff and contractors who will work hand-in-glove with the National Guard and state and local teams to assist, augment, and expedite the distribution and administration of coronavirus vaccines," the draft says.

Shots delivered at such vaccination sites would come from an area's allotted vaccine supply rather than a new federal allocation stream, according to the Post

The size of the FEMA sites could range from a 2,500 square-foot site capable of administering 250 doses per day to a 15,000 square-foot "Mega Model" capable of administering 6,000 doses a day.

Federal managers would have to consider local regulations when it comes to assigning roles at FEMA-run vaccination sites: "Depending on the situation, and authorization from the State Commissioner of Health, nonmedical personnel may be utilized for positions normally requiring a medical license/certificate," the draft says. 

The strategy, part of President Biden's larger pandemic response plan released Jan. 21, would elevate the federal government's role in the final step of administering vaccines — a shift from  the former administration's plan, which left this step up to state governments and local authorities.

To read the full Washington Post update, click here. 

More articles on public health:
Assume UK variant is deadlier, Fauci says; social distancing, masks needed until late July, model predicts — 9 COVID-19 updates
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