Biden Administration Announces New Investments to Support COVID-⁠19 Response and Recovery Efforts in the Hardest-Hit and High-Risk Communities and Populations as COVID-⁠19 Health Equity Task Force Submits Final Report

On November 10, Biden-Harris Administration announced a new investment in their effort to protect communities hit hard during the COVID-19 pandemic such as American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities. The $785 million in funding from the American Rescue Plan to support community-based organizations building vaccine confidence in AI/AN communities, rural areas, and low-income populations; to reinforce the efforts of Tribal communities to mitigating the spread of the virus; to expand public health systems’ ability to respond to the needs of AI/AN people with disabilities and older adults who have been among the highest risk for infection or death from COVID-19.


In addition to these efforts, funding is also available to help build a more diverse and sustainable public health workforce, including a new apprenticeship program that will train thousands of COVID-19 community health workers and prepare them for long-term careers in public health, and $35 million will be used by the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) to improve diversity in the public health workforce and to ensure improved capacity to response to the needs of underserved communities


Of these 780 million dollars, $240 million will be spent on expanding public health workforce by creating pipeline program for 13,000 community health workers and paraprofessionals from underserved Communities; $210 million will be used to build preparedness in Tribal communities, support school nurses in the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE), and to expand the public health workforce in the Indian Health Service (IHS) and across native communities.


Another $150 million of the 780 million dollars, will be used to address the single needs of people with disabilities and older adults in response and recovery from the COVID-19 virus and to improve their health and access to services from now on; more than $140 million will be used to continue supporting vaccine outreach to high risk communities such as AI/AN. Read more.