MADISON, Wis. — Gov. Tony Evers today announced the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) and the Wisconsin National Guard (WING) will launch the Mobile Vaccination Program on January 19. As additional vaccine is allocated to Wisconsin, this initiative will accelerate vaccination efforts and expand accessibility to all corners of Wisconsin by supplementing local partners with staffing support and resources.
“It has always been our goal to get folks vaccinated as quickly, safely, and equitably as possible,” said Gov. Evers. “These mobile vaccination teams are going to help us do just that by continuing to expand vaccine distribution across our state, leveraging partnerships and our best resources to meet folks where they are in their own communities.”
Local and Tribal health departments (LTHDs) are leading the coordination for the vaccination of police and fire personnel as well as EMS and unaffiliated health care providers in their jurisdictions. LTHDs that identify gaps in vaccine access or have exceeded local vaccination capacity will be able to request support or assistance from Wisconsin’s mobile vaccination teams. The teams will work closely with LTHDs to meet the unique needs of each community.
“This pandemic has amplified health inequities throughout the state—we have seen how differences in opportunity, resources, and access to quality health care have exacerbated this public health crisis,” said Secretary-designee Andrea Palm. “That is why this program is an especially critical tool in Wisconsin’s vaccination rollout. The Mobile Vaccination initiative will help close gaps in accessibility and ensure that every Wisconsinite will have the opportunity to get protected against COVID-19.”
The Mobile Vaccination Program is a collaboration between DHS, WING, and local health partners. At launch, the program will deploy nine mobile vaccination teams with the intention to scale up the program in order to support vaccination of Phase 1A, Phase 1B, and beyond. Mobile clinics will be staffed by WING and pharmacy or nursing student volunteers through a partnership with the University of Wisconsin System. All volunteers will be required to complete safety trainings and necessary instruction modules.
“Making vaccines available to the public is an all-of-Wisconsin effort that requires collaboration across state government,” said Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp, Wisconsin’s adjutant general. “Our Citizen Soldiers and Airmen in the Wisconsin National Guard have been an integral part of the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and we’re honored to continue serving our fellow citizens in this way.”
The University of Wisconsin System is also expanding a $500 tuition credit for students that help during the pandemic to eligible students who volunteer to do vaccinations.
“UW nursing and pharmacy students can provide critical help Wisconsinites get vaccinated,” said UW System President Tommy Thompson. “We are pleased to offer this tuition credit and appreciate the partnership with Gov. Tony Evers as we once again demonstrate the Wisconsin Idea at work – where there’s a problem facing Wisconsin, UW System is part of the solution.”
As the state continues to expand vaccination efforts, COVID-19 has not gone away. Wisconsinites are still encouraged to mask up, stay physically distant, and wash hands frequently to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and keep communities safe.
For information, resources, and data related to Wisconsin’s COVID-19 vaccination program, visit the COVID-19 vaccine page.
For up-to-date information about Wisconsin’s COVID-19 response, visit the DHS COVID-19 webpage. We encourage you to follow @DHSWI on Facebook, Twitter, or dhs.wi on Instagram for more information on COVID-19.