Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA) Responds to the National Academy of Science’s COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Framework

For Immediate Release
September 8, 2020
Contact: Brian Reardon

The Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA) supports the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Committee on Equitable Allocation of Vaccines for the Novel Coronavirus' adoption of several core principles that promote the common good as it finalizes its COVID-19 vaccine allocation plan. CHA appreciates that the Committee's vaccine distribution framework respects the inherent dignity and worth of all people; recognizes the role health care providers and communities have in vaccine distribution; and emphasizes distributive justice by ensuring the vaccine is provided in a manner to not only save lives, but also address health inequities.

In its comments CHA states, "We believe that all people, barring exceptional circumstances, have a responsibility to be vaccinated when needed to protect vulnerable people and broader public health. This responsibility is rooted not only in protecting one’s own health but more fundamentally in our obligation to protect through solidarity those who are most at risk or unable to be vaccinated. The development of an ethical framework for distributing vaccines is therefore critical so that individuals and families have equitable access to vaccines and are able to trust in their effectiveness."

The National Academies of Sciences have developed a draft framework to help guide policy makers on how to equitably distribute a potential COVID-19 vaccine. In addition to welcoming the framework's commitment to adopting principles which respect human dignity, prioritize those most at risk and address health inequities, CHA also urged the Committee to make further recommendations on the crucial role that public health, nonprofits, community leaders and other religious and social organizations can play in implementing the framework. CHA’s comments can be found HERE.

Download a PDF of the statement


The Catholic Health Association of the United States is the national leadership organization of the Catholic health ministry, representing the largest nonprofit provider of health care services in the nation.

  • 1 in 7 patients in the U.S. is cared for in a Catholic hospital each day.
  • Catholic health care, which includes more than 2,200 hospitals, nursing homes, long-term care facilities, systems, sponsors, and related organizations, serves the full continuum of health care across our nation.
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