Mass vaccination events supported by FEMA funding

Thursday, February 18, 2021

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has approved $3,116,229 in federal funding to Benton County, Oregon in support of COVID-19 mass vaccination clinics.

FEMA allocates this funding directly to the State of Oregon, which is responsible for ensuring that Benton County receives the award. Following the State's review process and upon receipt of appropriate documentation, the State will provide funds to Benton County on a reimbursable basis.

“We have been in some level of emergency response for over a year and the ability to receive expedited reimbursement for expenses will be integral for our ongoing success,” said Bryan Lee, Director for the Benton County Emergency Operations Center. “With the funding availability and our partnerships with Samaritan and OSU, we are ready and able to administer a large amount of vaccines as soon as the supply of vaccines are actually available to local jurisdictions.”

The funding will help support Benton County’s mass vaccination clinics by allowing for additional staffing and supplies, improvements to the COVID-19 phone bank software, and postage costs for providing accessible information to residents, regardless of access to technology.

The $3.1 million dollar amount is based on a formula calculated by FEMA, rather than data regarding estimated costs from Benton County. FEMA used information based on an ideal state of three mass vaccine clinics per week at 2,000 vaccines per clinic through April. They obtained a per vaccine cost based on their formula and applied it to those 6,000 vaccines per week.

Due to limited vaccine supply thus far, Benton County has been able to hold 1-2 mass vaccination clinics per week with an average of about 900 doses administered per week.