Langhorne, PA – Today, Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01), along with Bucks County Commissioner Diane Ellis-Marseglia and a bipartisan group of Pennsylvania state legislators, sent a letter to Governor Wolf and Acting Secretary Beam regarding shared concerns of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution in Bucks and Montgomery Counties. The local leaders firmly believe the proposed regional vaccination approach will not be in the best interest of the many residents who live within their communities that will now be forced to travel far distances to obtain a vaccine.
Fitzpatrick and the local leaders urged the Governor and Secretary Beam to consider and support a “county first” approach that would allow vaccines to be allotted to the counties, rather than creating one or two mass vaccination sites to cover the span of four counties.
“Bucks and Montgomery counties have the existing infrastructure and resources to handle an influx of direct shipments if the state decides to forgo the mass vaccination centers and send those earmarked allocations to the counties equally,” wrote the Pennsylvania lawmakers.
“Since the onset of the pandemic, our mantra has been county first, which is why we are advocating for what we collectively believe is best for the constituents of Bucks and Montgomery Counties,” said Rep. Fitzpatrick. “Creating regional mass vaccination sites that would require substantial travel, while simultaneously not increasing the number of vaccines allotted to each county is ineffective, inconvenient, and counterproductive. The State should utilize existing infrastructure to ensure that getting a vaccine is convenient and easily accessible for every resident. We must come together and work diligently so that Bucks and Montgomery Counties get their fair share of vaccines and ensure that each and every resident has equal and equitable access to the vaccine.”
“We were sorry acting director Beam has continued to pursue this plan to provide the single dose Johnson and Johnson shot to a limited area of Bucks County when we so desperately need these to reach homebound, challenged populations and hard to reach areas of Bucks County,” said Bucks County Commissioner Diane Ellis-Maseglia, LCSW.
Congressman Fitzpatrick also sent a letter to Governor Wolf and Acting Secretary Beam yesterday, calling on them to answer specific questions regarding distribution equity issues and demanding more information on the formula that has left Southeastern PA without their fair share of vaccines.
Full text of the letter can be found below and here.