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COVID-19 Vaccination in Rural Areas

Vaccination Rural Innovations for Vaccination
Learn how rural communities and healthcare providers are innovating to provide COVID-19 vaccination. Please share how your community is innovating by emailing your examples to Kristine Sande at with the subject line: COVID-19 Innovations.

Key Federal Vaccination Information

COVID-19 Vaccination
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Information on vaccine planning, administration, storage and handling, and more. Includes clinical information for each COVID-19 vaccine. Also offers a vaccination communication toolkit and other resources to help healthcare providers communicate with patients about the vaccine.

National Forum on COVID-19 Vaccine
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Resources and materials from a February 22-24, 2021 CDC forum focused on COVID-19 vaccination. Includes session recordings and supporting materials, with a focus on promoting effective strategies to build trust and confidence in COVID-19 vaccines, using data to optimize vaccine implementation, and sharing practical information for increasing vaccine access and addressing barriers to vaccination.

Guidance for Local, Tribal, and State Vaccination Programs

COVID-19 Vaccination Program Interim Playbook for Jurisdiction Operations
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Offers state, tribal, territorial, and local public health programs guidance from the CDC on planning and implementing COVID-19 vaccination programs within their jurisdictions. Provides information on identifying critical populations, recruiting and retaining providers, allocating and distributing COVID-19 vaccines, and more. Includes rural considerations.

States Plan for Vaccinating Their Populations Against COVID-19
National Academy for State Health Policy
Interactive map and chart showing state priorities for COVID-19 vaccine distribution to specific populations, including healthcare workers and other essential workers, long-term care residents and others in congregate facilities, and vulnerable populations, including rural and tribal populations.

Key Considerations for Counties in COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Plans
National Association of Counties
Information and resources to help counties plan for an equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine at the local level. Covers state distribution plans, background information, and county examples.

Rural-Specific Considerations

COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout in Rural Communities: Challenges, Innovations, and Unmet Needs
Georgia Health Policy Center
Provides insights from rural, frontier, and tribal organizations about the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. Discusses challenges in rural communities, including access barriers and vaccine hesitancy, and shares innovative strategies being used to address these challenges. Identifies unmet needs and potential strategies as the vaccination process continues.

COVID-19 Vaccine Considerations for Rural Health
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Video recording focused on COVID-19 vaccine implementation planning for rural stakeholders. Describes steps for prioritizing populations and allocations, an overview of distribution and administration, vaccination provider recruitment and enrollment, vaccine storage requirements, concerns about vaccine misinformation, and additional strategies for rural areas. Transcript available by clicking the dots above the Subscribe tab, then selecting Open Transcript.

Ensuring an Equitable Distribution of COVID-19 Vaccines in Rural Communities
National Rural Health Association
Policy brief addressing rural access to COVID-19 vaccines. Discusses the vaccine infrastructure, distribution, transportation, and storage needed to reach rural residents. Provides guidance for national, state, and local leaders.

Vaccine Hesitancy in Rural America
Kaiser Family Foundation
Provides information gathered in surveys and focus groups concerning public opinion about COVID-19 vaccination in rural areas. Includes rural data on the percentages of people who intend to get the vaccine, who intend to delay vaccination until they see how well it works in other people, and who fear becoming sick with COVID-19.

Communicating to Rural Audiences About Vaccination

COVID-19 Vaccine Communication Toolkit for Community-Based Organizations: Getting Started
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Resources and information to help organizations that serve communities impacted by COVID-19 share information on vaccination. Includes key messages, answers to frequently asked questions, a presentation slide deck, posters and flyers, newsletter content, social media messages, and more.

Social Media Toolkit: COVID-19 Vaccinations
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Offers sample social media messages and graphics to help share information on COVID-19 vaccination. Addresses information on the vaccines, benefits of vaccination, vaccine safety, and what to expect after vaccination.

COVID-19 Vaccine Communications Toolkit for Health Centers
National Association of Community Health Centers
Resources to help health centers build confidence in the COVID-19 vaccines. Includes key messages for communicating with patients and answers to frequently asked questions. Also provides sample social media posts, a press release template, a radio public service announcement example, waiting room posters, and more.

COVID-19 Vaccination Communication: Applying Behavioral and Social Science to Address Vaccine Hesitancy and Foster Vaccine Confidence
National Institutes of Health
Shares evidence-informed communication strategies to support COVID-19 vaccine distribution efforts nationally and at the state and local levels. Discusses the goals of vaccination communication, understanding the needs and perspectives of specific audiences, and how to target and tailor messages. Includes some discussion of the needs of rural and underserved communities. A Communicator's Tip Sheet for COVID-19 Vaccination is also available.

Building COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence
Societal Experts Action Network (SEAN), National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
Shares strategies to communicate with the public about COVID-19 vaccination to ensure demand and promote acceptance.

Training and Technical Assistance for Providers

Clinician Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA) Calls/Webinars
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Up-to-date guidance for clinicians from subject matter experts on key emergency preparedness and response topics. Many recent calls are focused on COVID-19 vaccination and related concerns. Webinar recordings for past COCA calls are available.

COVID-19 CISA (Clinical Immunization Safety Assessment) Clinical Consultation
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Healthcare providers and health departments in the U.S. can request a consultation for a complex COVID-19 vaccine safety question that is (1) about an individual patient residing in the U.S. or vaccine safety issue and (2) not readily addressed by CDC or Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices guidelines.

CDC Vaccine Inquiry Center
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Healthcare providers can get answers to vaccine questions by emailing

COVID-19 Vaccination Training Programs and Reference Materials for Healthcare Professionals
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
A list of immunization training and educational materials, including basic and COVID-19-vaccine-specific information. Covers vaccine storage and handling, vaccine administration, patient education, and clinical materials.

COVID-19 Vaccine Education Effort: Content for Healthcare Providers
Ad Council, COVID Collaborative
Video series for healthcare providers that features physicians and nurses addressing the efficacy and safety of the new vaccines. Covers safety, availability, cost, side effects, vaccine administration, patient education, and more. A Partner Toolkit includes answers to COVID-19 vaccine FAQs and more.

TRAIN Learning Network: COVID-19 Vaccination Training
Public Health Foundation
A collection of online learning opportunities for healthcare professionals related to COVID-19 vaccination. Registration required to access courses.

Vaccination Information for Specific Populations

COVID-19 Vaccination Plan for the Veterans Health Administration
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Guidance on the VA's vaccination program, which will provide vaccinations for veterans and VA staff. Covers storage and handling, safety monitoring, reporting, education, and communication. Appendix P provides detailed information on planned outreach to rural veterans.

IHS COVID-19 Vaccine Planning
Indian Health Service
Information from the Indian Health Service on vaccination planning for Indian Country. Includes the IHS pandemic vaccine plan, which discusses administration, distribution, and prioritization of the vaccine and features planning scenarios and facility planning resources.

Vaccine Information and Tribal Support
National Indian Health Board
Resources and information to help tribes engage regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. Includes information from federal agencies, recorded webinars and presentations, insights from experts, and more.

Vaccine Central
National Resource Center for Refugees, Immigrants, and Migrants
Resources to support health departments, community-based organizations, and others with vaccine efforts among refugee, immigrant, and migrant communities. Includes A Checklist for COVID-19 Vaccine Roll-out Among Refugees, Immigrants, and Migrants.

More on Vaccination

Last Updated: 2/8/2021