All community health centers are now eligible to take part in HHS' health center COVID-19 vaccine program, the agency said Wednesday.
The program directly allocates COVID-19 vaccines to health centers supported by HHS' Health Resources and Services Administration. HRSA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention jointly administer the program.
Nearly 1,500 health centers can now participate in the program, which launched in February with 250 participants. HHS expanded the program to another 700 health centers in March. The latest expansion includes more than 500 additional health centers operating over 2,500 care sites.
"Increasing access to vaccines among those hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic is critical. By adding to the number of community health centers participating in this program, we will help make sure shots are getting to those who need them most," HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra said in a statement. "The medical professionals at these local health centers already have trusted relationships in these communities, and this expansion will ensure every community health center in the country can be a part of our vaccination effort."
According to HHS, racial and ethnic minorities make up about 70% of people that have received a vaccine through the program.