California Department of Public Health Announces Membership in the Community Vaccine Advisory Committee to Ensure Equity in COVID-19 Vaccine Access

Committee Members Advise State on Advancing the Principles of Safety, Equity and Transparency in COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and Allocation

SACRAMENTO – Today, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced membership in the Community Vaccine Advisory Committee with broad representation from organizations throughout California to provide input into the distribution and allocation of the COVID-19 vaccine. The committee will help guide the state’s decision making and build equity into decisions about vaccine distribution and allocation.

“While the COVID-19 vaccine is new, we are not starting our planning process from scratch. This is an area of expertise we have strong partnerships in, building on lessons learned from previous vaccination campaigns, including H1NI and seasonal flu,” said Governor Newsom. “We’ve been planning and thinking about this for months, and we are being guided by some of the world’s best experts in this field.”

California is leveraging its well-established existing immunization framework and emergency response infrastructure to coordinate efforts between state, local, and territorial authorities to distribute and administer the vaccine.  

The Community Vaccine Advisory Committee will build on the work of the Scientific Safety Review Work Group and the Drafting Guidelines Work Group. The Committee will provide input and feedback for the ongoing planning and engagement efforts to ensure equitable vaccine distribution and allocation. In the beginning, vaccine supplies will be limited and will be distributed to those at highest risk.

“We must work together to ensure that vulnerable Californians, those most at risk, have equitable access to the vaccine,” said Dr. Erica Pan, Acting State Public Health Officer. “All of our preparations for the vaccine are guided by the need for safety, equity and transparency in the process. The members of the Community Vaccine Advisory Committee will provide critical input to ensure we are making the best possible decisions representing broad stakeholder perspectives.” 


California’s planning process for the eventual distribution and administration of COVID-19 vaccines continues to be guided by three overarching principles. They include ensuring the COVID-19 vaccine meets safety requirements, ensuring the vaccine is distributed and administered equitably, at first to those with the highest risk of becoming infected and spreading COVID-19, and making transparency a top priority by bringing in community stakeholders from the beginning. 


California’s COVID-19 vaccination plan is being implemented in several phases. In the beginning, vaccine supplies will be limited and it likely will be well into 2021 before vaccine is widely available.

The Community Vaccine Advisory Committee will be chaired by California Surgeon General Dr. Nadine Burke Harris. Below is a partial list of organizations that will have representation on the Community Vaccine Advisory Committee:

  • AARP
  • American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
  • American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
  • Alzheimer’s Association
  • Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF)
  • Asians Advancing Justice
  • Association of California School Administrators (ACSA)
  • California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform (CANHR)
  • California Area Indian Health Service
  • California Assisted Living Association (CALA)
  • California Association of Area Agencies on Aging (C4A)
  • California Association of Family Physicians (CAFP)
  • California Association of Health Facilities (CAHF)
  • California Association of Health Plans (CAHP)
  • California Association of Long-Term Care Medicine (CALTCM)
  • California Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems (CAPH)
  • California Association of Rural Health Clinics (CARHC)
  • California Association of Veteran Service Agencies
  • California Behavioral Health Directors Association (CBHDA)
  • California Black Health Network
  • California Chamber of Commerce
  • California Conference of Local Health Officers (CCLHO)
  • California Consortium for Urban Indian Health, Inc. (CCUIH)
  • California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC)
  • California Hospital Association (CHA)
  • California Immunization Coalition
  • California Labor Federation
  • California LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network
  • California Long-Term Care Ombudsman Association (CLTCOA)
  • California Manufacturers & Technology Association (CMTA)
  • California Medical Association (CMA)
  • California Nurses Association (CNA)
  • California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN)
  • California Primary Care Association (CPCA)
  • California Rural Indian Health Board
  • California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc. (CRLA)
  • California School Nurses Organization (CSNO)
  • California State Parent Teachers Association (CAPTA)
  • California Superintendent of Public Instruction
  • Catholic Charities
  • Comite Civico del Valle
  • County Health Executives Association of California (CHEAC)
  • Disability Rights California
  • Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF)
  • Emergency Medical Services Administrators of California (EMSAC)
  • Faith in the Valley
  • First African Methodist Episcopal Church
  • First Five Association
  • Health Access
  • Housing California
  • Jakara Movement
  • Justice in Aging
  • Latino Coalition for a Healthy California
  • Local Health Plans of California (LHPC)
  • Mixteco Indigena Community Organizing Project (MICOP, Central Coast/Indigenous Farmworker population)
  • Service Employees International Union (SEIU) California State Council
  • Service Employees International Union Local 1000 (SEIU 1000) (Unit 17-Nurses)
  • State Council on Development Disabilities
  • The California Endowment
  • The Children’s Partnership
  • UFW Foundation
  • United Domestic Workers (UDW/AFSCME)
  • Vision y Compromiso
  • Western Center on Law and Poverty

The Community Vaccine Advisory Committee is part of the state’s initial COVID-19 vaccine plan, which was submitted to the CDC in October 2020. Many vaccine candidates are in clinical trials currently, and California is putting a system in place for the safety review, prioritization, distribution and administration of vaccines as supply becomes available.


Information about California’s vaccine planning is available on the CDPH website.