Montana VA Slated to Receive First Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine for Veterans, Tester Announces
U.S. Senator Jon Tester, Ranking Member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, released the following statement following news that the Montana Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has been selected as one of 103 VA sites to receive initial doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine:
“I’m encouraged that Montana has been selected as one of VA’s initial sites for distribution of the Moderna vaccine. This first round of vaccinations will help save lives by effectively slowing the spread of the coronavirus at VA facilities, local hospitals, and in the community. Moving forward, I will continue to hold VA accountable in ensuring that it adequately distributes this vaccine to various clinics across the state—especially those in rural areas—to better protect veterans and frontline workers.”
In accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, Montana VA will begin vaccinating veterans and health care personnel once the Food and Drug Administration issues an emergency use authorization for the Moderna vaccine.
Last month, Tester urged VA Secretary Robert Wilkie to lay out the Department’s plan to allocate a coronavirus vaccine, reach veterans in rural and hotspot areas, combat vaccine misinformation, and strengthen cross-government and community partnerships. He also implored the VA to distribute the vaccine following guidance from public health experts and requested the Department’s strategy in allocating its initial doses among staff and vulnerable veterans to ensure those at highest risk receive the vaccine first. He later doubled down on this call at a Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing last week.