14 Jan A Statement on COVID-19 Vaccinations for Veterinarians, CVTs and Staff
Since the initial news of the Commonwealth’s plans for phased distribution of COVID-19 vaccinations was reported in December, PVMA has been continually trying to get information regarding the veterinary profession’s status in the plan. Early on, the Department of Health told us that veterinarians were in Phase 1B. As far as we know, that has not changed, but we are increasingly concerned that we are no longer getting updates or answers for our requests for clarification.
These are the questions we are asking the Department of Health and the Governor’s Office.
- Are veterinarians definitely included in Phase 1B? While we heard from the State Public Health Veterinarian that we are, all official communications fail to specifically list veterinarians.
- Do Certified Veterinary Technicians and all veterinary office staff fall into Phase 1B? The entire veterinary team works in conditions that often prohibit social distancing while caring for Pennsylvania’s animal population. These front-line essential employees should be included in 1B.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
- Contact the Department of Health. Identify yourself as a veterinarian (or veterinary professional) and ask the above questions. Emails should be sent to Nate Wardle, Department of Health Communications Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org and Will Danowski, Secretary of Legislative Affairs at email@example.com.
- Visit your county government’s website and register to receive a vaccination in Phase 1B.
- Monitor the COVID-19 Vaccination Information page for updates on the phased distribution plan. We also encourage you to complete the Feedback Form and let the Department of Health know your thoughts on their distribution plan.
It is important for the state government to hear from our profession. While we want to ensure that those in most need of the vaccinations get them first, veterinarians and their staff are essential workers and play a key role in public health. It is important that we are not omitted from the phased distribution plan.