Dear Colleagues in VA Health Professions Education,
Based on a meeting on Dec.1, 2020 with our colleagues from VHA’s National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, OAA would like to provide the following update with respect to COVID vaccines and health professions trainees (HPTs):
- Vaccines: Pending emergency use authorization from FDA, two COIVD-19 vaccines will be provided: one from Pfizer and one from Moderna (most likely to be available shortly after Pfizer’s). Two vaccinations will be required, several weeks apart. The two injections must come from the same vaccine and ideally from the same facility as the two doses are tied together for tracking purposes.
- Administration of Vaccines: The HPTs in the VHA have been included in the National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention planning for supplying and distributing the vaccines to each VA facility. The process for administering the vaccines will be based on achieving coverage for priority populations (e.g., health care providers, first responders, patients with high risk conditions) and coverage for priority health care provider groups (e.g., those working in COVID ICUs/floors or ERs). Trainees will receive the same coverage as the health care providers within these priority groups. The details how this process will work will be facility specific.
- Vaccines Administered by Academic Affiliates: The academic affiliates may also be supplying vaccines to HPTs; close coordination between the DEOs at the VA facility and the DIO/program directors at the academic affiliate will be necessary to make the process of vaccination for non-VA paid HPTs is efficient and cost effective (e.g., ideally HPTs should receive the vaccine from the same institution). It is recommended that HPTs receive the vaccine from the organization that can provide it soonest and from which both initial and follow up dose visits can be made and kept by the trainee.
We will keep you updated as new developments that impact our HPTs occur.
On behalf of
Marjorie Bowman MD MPA
Chief Academic Affiliations Officer, Office of Academic Affiliations (14AA)