HAP News Releases and Statements

HAP Statement on COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility Expansion Timeline

March 31, 2021

Today, Pennsylvania Acting Secretary of Health Alison Beam announced Department of Health’s roadmap for expanding eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine. The timeline includes a phased approach to opening by April 19 eligibility to all Pennsylvanians aged 16 or older.

Andy Carter, president and CEO of The Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania (HAP) released the following statement in response to the announcement:

“The expansion of eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine announced today is another sign of hope for Pennsylvanians eager to receive this welcome lifeline. Pennsylvania’s hospital community has played a key role in administering millions of doses of COVID-19 vaccine and we look forward to continuing our close partnership with the state Department of Health as we move to new phases of eligibility.

“As we continue collaborating, HAP will ask all stakeholders to recognize that the accelerated expansion will require the dedication of significant resources to maximize vaccination rates, timely definition of expectations being placed on providers, and close coordination, particularly at the local and regional levels.

“Even though there is increased supply of these three safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines, it is important to remember that it will take time for Pennsylvania’s vaccine providers to administer the vaccine to everyone who wants it. Additionally, we need efforts to reach into communities and ensure lifesaving vaccinations reach every Pennsylvanian seeking protection, and help those who may be hesitant have an opportunity to find reassurance from trusted clinical voices.

“With case counts rising and new COVID-19 variants emerging across the country, we all need to keep doing our part to slow the spread of the virus. Please continue to follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including wearing a mask, practicing good hand hygiene, and avoiding large gatherings.”

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