As you may have been tracking by now, several bases in CONUS and some facilities in OCONUS have received and have started to administer the COVID-19 vaccine. We currently have no definite timeline on when we will receive the vaccines. Here is what we do know:
- This vaccine is an important effort for the way forward to protect our personnel and their families and for the care of the communities where we live and work.
- When we receive the COVID-19 vaccines, we are prepared to implement a standardized and coordinated strategy for prioritizing, distributing, administering, any COVID-19 vaccine(s) through a phased approach in line with the DoD COVID-19 vaccine plan.
- DOD prioritization schema is consistent with CDC guidance and prioritizes those providing direct medical care, maintaining essential national security and installation functions, deploying forces, and those beneficiaries at the highest risk for developing severe illness from COVID-19 before other members of the DOD population.
- Initial shipments of vaccine, when that occurs, will be prioritized for RAFL and RAFM Healthcare providers, Healthcare support, Emergency Services & Public Safety Personnel. Prioritized DoD personnel are highly encouraged to take the vaccine to protect their health, their families, their community, and lower the public health risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Initially the vaccine will be offered under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) and vaccinations will be voluntary until achieving full FDA approval. Initial quantities of the vaccine, anticipated in the near future, are limited and will be distributed on a rolling delivery basis as more vaccines becomes available. Vaccines for COVID-19 are only available after they are demonstrated to be safe and effective in large phase-three clinical trials, and have been manufactured and distributed safely and securely.
Please continue to wear appropriate masks, practice physical distancing, wash hands, and follow restriction of movement IAW Host Nation and installation guidelines and regulations to protect our safety as a large portion of the population will need to be vaccinated before COVID-19 risks diminish.
We remain committed to our priorities during the COVID-19 pandemic to protect our people, maintain readiness, and support the national COVID-19 response. Thank you for your patience and cooperation. We are all in this together!
For questions and concerns, please reach out to the 48MDG.