Carper, Coons, Blunt Rochester Highlight Funding for Vaccinating Delawareans in the American Rescue Plan

WILMINGTON, Del.  — Today, U.S. Senators Tom Carper, Chris Coons, Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (all D-Del.) and Delaware Health and Social Services Secretary Molly Magarik joined together with Dr. Janice Nevin, president and CEO of ChristianaCare at its Wilmington hospital to highlight funding for Delaware to help combat COVID-19 through vaccine distribution, education and safety. This funding was made possible by the American Rescue Plan Act, supported by Delaware’s Congressional Delegation and signed into law by President Biden in March.

The latest COVID-19 relief bill, the American Rescue Plan Act, invests nearly $93 billion to get vaccines into the arms of Americans and provide crucial supplies, testing, staffing, and other public health activities to stop the spread of COVID-19. This includes funding for states, like Delaware, to help speed up vaccine distribution and administration.

The American Rescue Plan Act will provide Delaware with $16,018,627 from the Centers for Disease Control to expand COVID-19 vaccine programs, with more funding to combat the virus to come. Delaware has received at least $25 million so far from COVID-19 relief legislation supported by Delaware’s Congressional Delegation.

“The only way we can truly recover from this pandemic, rejoin our loved ones, and get our communities and economy back up and running is by continuing Delaware’s safe and efficient vaccine program,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper. “Now that Delaware has opened up its vaccination waiting list to those 16 and older, weeks ahead of President Biden’s target date, we can use this funding to help us reach our goal to get more vaccines into more arms of Delawareans, and provide education and access to those who need it on the safety and efficacy of getting vaccinated.”

“The American Rescue Plan is principally focused on getting us out of this pandemic,” said Sen. Coons, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “In Congress, we appropriated $93 billion, and a fair amount of that is specifically to deliver more vaccines. Some of that funding is for contact tracing, some of it is for support for the healthcare workforce that has been so tested and challenged by this pandemic and has done such an amazing job, but a whole lot of it is to get more doses of more vaccines in more arms more quickly. About $16 million of that federal funding comes here to Delaware, specifically, and strengthens the trajectory and the delivery in this effort.”

“This funding for vaccines, testing, and contact tracing is critical for slowing the spread of COVID-19. We quickly surpassed President’s Biden’s goal of 100 million vaccines in 100 days,” said Congresswoman Blunt Rochester. “This funding is crucial for sustaining the progress we’ve made in vaccine distribution. I’m proud to join Senators Carper and Coons to highlight this funding. I am proud of the work we did on the American Rescue Plan and am grateful for the Administration’s leadership as we recover, rebuild, and restore our nation. I encourage every Delawarean, especially now that everyone 16 and older is eligible, to get their vaccine when they have the chance to help protect our communities and move toward a healthier future.”   

“The COVID-19 vaccine distribution is the largest public health response in our state’s history,” Secretary Magarik said. “Vaccinating hundreds of thousands of Delawareans against this deadly disease takes painstaking organization across the government and health care sectors. This effort also requires increased federal funding to plan and staff the clinics, document the vaccinations and promote the vaccine with the public. For those reasons and many others, we are grateful to the Congressional Delegation for supporting the vaccine distribution in our state through increased federal funding in the American Rescue Plan Act.”

As a leading regional health system committed to caring for the community, ChristianaCare has been on the front lines of testing and vaccination, delivering over 100,000 COVID tests and close to 40,000 vaccinations to protect the community against the virus. ChristianaCare holds mass events each week vaccinating thousands of Delawareans, including the highest need neighborhoods, in partnership with trusted faith-based and community leaders.

“COVID-19 exposed the sobering realities that drive health inequities, the disproportionate impact on communities of color, and the effect of the burden of chronic disease,” said Nevin, M.D., MPH, president and CEO of ChristianaCare. “Access to coverage and care is absolutely essential for every member of our community. Our commitment to equity has never been more important and the commitment of our caregivers volunteering to staff these events has never been stronger.”