The President Orders PREP Act Declaration Amendment to Expand COVID-19 Vaccinator Eligibility to Additional Classes of Medical Professionals and Health Care Students

HHS Launches New Portal for Vaccinators to Check Eligibility Status and Volunteer with their State

As vaccine supply continues to increase in the coming weeks and all adults across the U.S. become eligible for vaccination by May 1, President Biden is announcing new steps to increase the number of vaccinators to administer vaccines. Through today’s actions more health care personnel, such as dentists and veterinarians will be eligible to participate in the national effort to vaccinate the U.S. population, with the goal of getting the nation closer to normal by the Fourth of July.

The President is taking the following steps today to increase the number of vaccinators in the U.S.:

Ordering an Amendment to the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act Declaration to Allow More Qualified Professionals to Serve as Vaccinators. This action, which was completed by the Acting Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), authorizes additional categories of qualified professionals to prescribe, dispense, and administer COVID-19 vaccines anywhere in the country. Newly eligible vaccinators include: Dentists, Emergency Medical Technicians (Advanced and Intermediate EMTs), Midwives, Optometrists, Paramedics, Physician Assistants, Podiatrists, Respiratory Therapists, and Veterinarians. This amendment also authorizes recently retired members of the above professions, pharmacists and pharmacy interns to serve as vaccinators, if they were in good standing upon expiration of their license. And, this amendment authorizes medical students, nursing students, and students of the other eligible health care professions with proper training and professional supervision to serve as vaccinators. States are encouraged to further expand the categories of persons authorized to administer COVID-19 vaccines in their states, as authorized under the PREP Act, to respond to the local needs and availability of potential vaccinators.

This effort is the Biden Administration’s third amendment to the PREP Act Declaration. The Administration’s previous amendments authorized any health care provider who is licensed or certified in any state to administer COVID-19 vaccines in any other state or U.S. territory; authorized any physician, advanced practice registered nurse, registered nurse, or practical nurse whose license or certification expired within the past five years – and was in good standing – to administer COVID-19 vaccines in any state or U.S. territory; and authorized any member of a uniformed service as well as federal government employees, contractors and volunteers deployed by a federal department or agency to vaccinate in the state or territory to which they are deployed.

Launching an Online Vaccinator Portal. Health care professionals, retirees, and students can now visit for information on whether or not they are eligible to administer the COVID-19 vaccine under federal law. The site also includes links to volunteer management portals for every state, for those professionals and students who wish to volunteer as vaccinators. HHS is also conducting a significant outreach effort to health professional associations, schools of health professions, public health and emergency management stakeholders, and state and local health officers and immunization managers to share vaccinator eligibility information and get the word out about volunteer opportunities.

Deploying Federal Vaccinators Across the Country. Departments and agencies from across the U.S. government are contributing their own health care and support personnel to help surge the national vaccinator workforce. The Biden Administration has deployed over 4,200 agency personnel to administer COVID-19 vaccines, including from the National Disaster Medical System and Public Health Service Corps within the Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense, Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Forest Service. Health care professionals the federal government has deployed include Physicians, Physician Assistants, Nurses, Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians, Veterinarians, and EMTs. The federal government has hundreds of additional interagency vaccinators ready to deploy as further needs are identified.

Overview of Qualified Vaccinators – All PREP Act Declaration Amendments

Health Professionals (Current and Previously Active):

  • Dentists
  • Emergency medical technicians (advanced or intermediate EMTs)
  • Midwives
  • Nurses
    • Advanced practice registered nurses (APRN)
    • Registered nurses (RN)
    • Licensed practical nurses (LPN)
  • Optometrists
  • Paramedics
  • Pharmacists, pharmacy interns, and pharmacy technicians
  • Physicians
  • Physician assistants
  • Podiatrists
  • Respiratory therapists
  • Veterinarians

Health Care Students:

  • Dental
  • Emergency medical technicians (advanced or intermediate EMTs)
  • Medical
  • Midwifery
  • Nursing
  • Optometry
  • Paramedic
  • Pharmacy and pharmacy intern
  • Physician assistant
  • Podiatry
  • Respiratory therapy
  • Veterinarian

Other Qualified Vaccinators:
• Licensed health professionals or other individuals authorized under the law of their state
• Health care professionals or other individuals who hold an active license or certification permitting the person to prescribe, dispense, or administer vaccines under the law of another state
• Federal responders, including uniformed services or federal government employees, contractors, or volunteers


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