PAs Recognized as Vital to Nationwide COVID-19 Vaccine Administration
PAs Granted Flexibility to Vaccinate Millions of Americans
March 12, 2021
The most recent amendment to the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act declaration took effect March 11 giving PAs, retired PAs, and PA students increased vaccination authority. These changes demonstrate the federal government’s recognition that PAs are instrumental in the national fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Although PAs were included in previous PREP Act declaration provisions, which authorized healthcare providers permitted to prescribe, dispense, or administer vaccines in a state to do so in any state, AAPA asked in a letter to HHS that PAs to be explicitly listed among the healthcare providers who may do so. This clarification was requested because although no State law prohibits PAs from ordering or administering vaccines, many PA practice acts do not specifically list these duties and it led to uncertainty. AAPA also advocated for retired PAs and PA students to be included in the PREP Act declaration.
Effective March 11, 2021, through an amendment to the PREP Act declaration, the Federal government:
- Explicitly lists licensed PAs as authorized to prescribe, dispense and administer COVID-19 vaccines in any state
- Authorizes retired PAs with a license that expired in good standing in the past 5 years to prescribe, dispense and administer COVID-19 vaccines in any state
- Allows PA students to administer COVID-19 vaccines, when specific conditions are met
AAPA staff also met with FEMA to ensure that PAs are among the healthcare providers who are being recruited nationwide to meet the Federal goal of vaccinating 100 million Americans in 100 days. Learn more about how PAs can volunteer.
For more information about vaccination authority, go to the HHS Public Health Emergency website.
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