Supporting Supplemental COVID-19 Funding

March 30, 2022

The Honorable Charles Schumer
Majority Leader
U.S. Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Minority Leader
U.S. Senate
Washington D.C. 20510

The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
Minority Leader
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Leaders:

On behalf of the Adult Vaccine Access Coalition (AVAC), we write to express our support for passage of COVID-19 supplemental funding to support ongoing COVID-19 vaccination efforts.

AVAC consists of over 70 organizational leaders in health and public health that are committed to addressing the range of barriers to adult immunization and to raising awareness of the importance of adult immunization. AVAC works towards common legislative and regulatory solutions that will strengthen and enhance access to adult immunization across the health care system. Our priorities and objectives are driven by a consensus process with the goal of enabling the range of stakeholders to have a voice in the effort to improve access to and utilization of adult immunizations.

Immunizations are a highly cost-effective form of preventive medicine that help save lives by protecting the health and wellbeing of individuals and families in communities nationwide. Over the last decade, advancements in technology, policy, and infrastructure have strengthened the immunization landscape. Vaccines have always been one of greatest public health achievements, but especially during the pandemic, where populations that are most vulnerable to the COVID-19 are also at greater risk of adverse health consequences from other vaccine preventable conditions. The devastating economic and personal toll of the COVID-19 pandemic is a stark and painful reminder of the impact of infectious disease on our families, communities, and global societies.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to afflict individuals, families, and communities across the country, with many communities of color having been disproportionally impacted. Continuing the fight against COVID-19 requires collaboration from Congress and the Administration. The National COVID-19 Preparedness Plan initiated by the Biden Administration in February 2022 would ensure that the federal government has the capacity to make free and widely available life-saving tools such as vaccines.1 The Biden Administration initially requested $22.5 billion in COVID-19 funding to strengthen pandemic preparedness measures domestically and worldwide.

Without funding, the United States may not have enough additional booster shots, variant specific vaccines or second generation vaccines to protect against future waves of COVID-19. Appropriated funding is essential to continue vaccination campaign efforts, including support for health care providers to offer COVID-19 vaccines, boosters, and other routinely recommended vaccines without added barriers to access of an individual’s ability to pay for the vaccine. Most importantly, to promote public health goals, funding is needed for the COVID-19 Uninsured Program. This program will stop accepting COVID-19 vaccination claims for uninsured patients beginning on April 5, 2022 due to a lack of sufficient funds.

While the United States has made tremendous strides in the fight against COVID-19, the effort is not over. As our nation transitions to a new phase of the pandemic, one aimed at responding to new COVID-19 variants as they emerge and preparing for future pandemics, we must also work to ensure that individuals are up to date on their COVID-19 vaccines, boosters, and also receive other recommended vaccines that may have been missed during the pandemic.

It is critical that Congress expeditiously pass additional COVID-19 relief funding before a funding shortfall deters our nation’s recovery. Thank you for your consideration.


Patricia M. D’Antonio
Vice President, Policy and Professional Affairs
The Gerontological Society of America
Co-Chair, Adult Vaccine Access Coalition

Phyllis Arthur
Vice President, Infectious Diseases & Emerging Science Policy
Biotechnology Innovation Organization
Co-Chair, Adult Vaccine Access Coalition

1 White House National COVID-19 Preparedness Plan. (2022). Available here.