January 22, 2021
Rapidly administering COVID-19 vaccine as quickly and safely as possible is a public health priority. Doing so will help prevent individuals from serious illness or death from COVID-19. Evidence from vaccine clinics in different states and experience has shown that high-throughput vaccine clinics can be conducted safely and effectively with appropriate protocols. Clinics are designed and staffed by health care personnel who share the State’s goal of preserving and promoting health. Accordingly, the occupancy limits for gatherings and retail operations do not apply to vaccine clinics.
In Executive Order 16 FY20/21, Governor Janet T. Mills delegates to the Commissioners of the Department of Economic and Community Development and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) the authority to issue “activity-specific requirements designed to minimize the risk of transmission of the COVID-19 virus, as necessary and appropriate to implement this Order and the Restarting Maine's Economy Plan, identified and incorporated within Executive Order 49 FY 19/20.” Such requirements must “prioritize the protection of public health, while giving consideration to the impact of the requirements on the daily lives of Maine people, Maine businesses, and the Maine economy.”
DHHS is issuing these requirements for vaccine clinics under this authority. “Vaccine clinics” are operated by organizations with provider agreements with the Maine Immunization Program (MIP) that have been provided COVID-19 vaccines by the State of Maine under those agreements. Vaccine clinic operators must comply with both the terms of the provider agreements, as well as any additional requirements applicable to vaccine clinics issued by MIP. These requirements include, among others, not charging individuals in Maine for any cost associated with vaccine administration.
Vaccine clinics must comply with the following provisions set forth in the Community Buildings and Services Checklist, which are incorporated herein as requirements: provisions requiring 6 feet of distance among individuals, requiring all individuals to wear face coverings, and ensuring people in lines stand 6 feet apart, as well as those provisions governing restrooms, employees, transactions, and cleaning. DHHS may adjust the requirements for a vaccine clinic upon a site inspection.