MA state legislators urge Baker administration to prioritize vaccine supply to regional collaboratives

Coronavirus Local Impact

BOSTON (Mass.gov) – In a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary MaryLou Sudders, 54 state legislators urged the Baker Administration to prioritize the distribution of COVID-19 vaccine to Regional Collaboratives. These Regional Collaboratives have been established across the commonwealth and provide unique vaccine access for many Massachusetts residents and have the capacity to administer 3,750 vaccines a week. 

The letter, led by Rep. Mindy Domb and Sen. Jo Comerford, comes following the Governor’s announcement that the state expected increases in vaccine supply in the coming weeks.  

Legislators wrote: “Regional Collaboratives are powered by local public health and public safety officials who have earned the trust of our communities. They are operating largely in easily accessible, well-known locations. They are the best suited to reach our constituents and those facing transportation challenges. They have prepared to scale their work to reach their maximum capacity. Our constituents and municipalities have expressed interest and, in many cases, a preference for these local, familiar sites.” 

Legislators expressed concern that, as the state ramps up delivery of vaccine to the seven mass vaccination sites, these regional collaboratives are critically underutilized, causing “confusion, distrust, and disappointment at the local level.” In addition, the letter noted that not every county has a mass vaccination site, and not every resident has transportation to get to one. 

Legislators urged the Administration to “increase distribution of vaccine supply to our municipal partners. They are eager, ready, accessible, steeped in a commitment to equity, and among the very best prepared to get this job done and to do so quickly and well. They are known and trusted in our communities and can more successfully address vaccine hesitancy when needed.” Moreover, legislators noted that “investing in local public health now will sustain us in this crisis moment and in the days and years ahead.” 

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