Dr. Richard Pan Statement on Budget Dollars for Vaccine Distribution

January 5, 2021

SACRAMENTO, CA — Dr. Richard Pan, state senator representing the Sacramento region and Chair of the Senate Health Committee made the following statement regarding the Governor’s announcement that the budget will propose $300 million to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine:

“Rapidly manufacturing, distributing and administering COVID vaccines in 2021 will be a critical step in defeating this pandemic this year.  I welcome Governor Newsom’s announcement that his budget proposal will include $300 million to support vaccination efforts is critical to accelerate the pace of vaccinations. California is experiencing one of the highest rates of transmission in the country and we must simplify the process to distribute the vaccine faster. In the absence of federal leadership and funding, it has been particularly challenging for all states to develop and implement effective vaccination plans, although recent Congressional action passing the COVID stimulus bill finally provides local and state funding for vaccination efforts. I look forward to partnering with the Governor, public health leaders and other stakeholders to more effectively combat the coronavirus ravaging our state.

I also hope that when Governor Newsom unveils his budget later this week it will include an augmentation to increase public health staffing levels at both the California Department of Public Health and at local health departments that are working around the clock to keep Californians safe and healthy.  While we begin vaccinating our communities, to get COVID-19 under control so businesses can re-open and kids can get back to school, we must wear masks in public, wash our hands frequently, stay home as much as possible and follow local public health guidelines.”