– The House today passed legislation authored by Rep. Tim O’Neal (R-Washington) that would have the Pennsylvania National Guard assist with the distribution and administration of COVID-19 vaccinations throughout the Commonwealth.
“More than 20 states have successfully used National Guard members to assist with COVID-19 vaccination efforts,” O’Neal said. “As Pennsylvania continues to rank among the bottom third in the percentage of vaccines administered, it is time to solve this logistical problem. Our National Guard members have the knowledge and experience from efforts both at home and abroad to position shots to quickly get them into the arms of our residents. In addition, the president has authorized full reimbursement to states that use the National Guard to respond to the pandemic.”
House Bill 326
would have the National Guard within 45 days of the bill becoming law coordinate with the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) and Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency to develop plans to establish and operate COVID-19 vaccination sites across the Commonwealth. Furthermore, within 45 days of the bill becoming law, the governor would submit to the General Assembly a report outlining how the National Guard has been integrated into the state’s vaccine plan. This would include the availability and capacity of guard units for vaccinations and deployment to skilled nursing facilities to combat outbreaks, current and anticipated allocation of COVID-19 vaccines and federal guidance on use of the guard for vaccination efforts.
The 48th Legislative District in Washington County includes the city of Washington; Chartiers, North Franklin, North Strabane and South Strabane townships; and Canonsburg, East Washington and Houston boroughs.