Senator Maria Collett

Image by BP Miller, Chorus Photography

Lower Gwynedd, Pa. – March 31, 2021 — Today, the Department of Health (DOH) and COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force announced an accelerated vaccine timeline for Pennsylvania and an updated allocation plan for J&J vaccines. Senator Maria Collett (D-12 Montgomery/Bucks) would like to share her initial reactions:

“Montgomery, Bucks, and other Southeast counties have been among the hardest and longest hit by this virus. We are also fortunate to have the infrastructure needed to efficiently distribute vaccines and continue to ramp up operations to meet the overwhelming demand in our region – we just needed more doses. I am glad to see that future allocations of J&J vaccines will now go directly to our counties and local providers, rather than two new mass vaccination centers. This allocation strategy is something I have been advocating for alongside local county commissioners, Southeast legislators, and my constituents.”

“While I’m as eager as anyone to move to the next phases of vaccine distribution, we cannot allow our unvaccinated 1A residents – particularly our seniors, homebound, homeless, and underserved communities – to be left behind when the flood gates open to 1B and 1C Pennsylvanians. Moving forward into additional phases without a comprehensive strategy to reach the unvaccinated in Phase 1A will only further delay the Commonwealth’s COVID recovery efforts and potentially exacerbate existing inequities.”

“While I welcome increased vaccine supply to the Southeast, my constituents remember the challenges we faced to obtain appointments in January and February when only 4 million Pennsylvanians were eligible for vaccination. I look forward to hearing in the coming days how DOH plans to address the providers’ specific logistical concerns with rapid eligibility expansion – something no number of additional doses will solve alone.”