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States Lack Funds for COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution

The federal government has ordered states to be ready for COVID-19 vaccine distribution by November 15, even though a vaccine is not expected to be approved until later this year. State health officials are frustrated about the lack of federal financial support for vaccine distribution. Operation Warp Speed, the federal initiative to fast-track the development of COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics, lacks adequate funding for the distribution of vaccines on the local level. Uncovered costs include recruiting and training workers, improving data systems to track inventory, setting up vaccination sites, and locally tailored vaccination communications campaigns. In Congress, bipartisan talks aimed at another coronavirus relief package have deteriorated and prospects for reviving them are uncertain.

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