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Two Central Oregonians on state’s new Vaccine Advisory Committee


Deschutes, Crook County health officials among appointees

PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) — The Oregon Health Authority on Thursday named the 27 members of its Vaccine Advisory Committee that will determine the sequence in which new COVID-19 vaccines are distributed around the state. Two are from Central Oregon.

The committee will advise OHA on vaccine sequencing for phases 1b, 1c and 2 of the state’s vaccine distribution plan, with the goal of prioritizing communities most affected by COVID-19. 

The COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Committee will be grounded in OHA’s definition of health equity, which — as cited in this excerpt — is a health system where “all people can reach their full health potential and well-being and are not disadvantaged by their race, ethnicity, language, disability, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, social class, intersections among these communities or identities, or other socially determined circumstances.”

To advance health equity, and counter unjust COVID-19 inequities, the COVID-19 VAC will:

  • Advise OHA on the ethical principles that should guide decisions on sequencing of COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Review data on COVID-19 and immunization inequities.
  • Advise OHA on which workers, high-risk groups or critical populations should be sequenced at what time, taking into consideration where they are located across the state.

The committee roster is as follows:

Aileen DuldulaoOregon Pacific Islander Coalition
Cherity Bloom-MillerSiletz Community Health Clinic
Christine SandersRockwood Community Development Corp.
Daysi Bedolla SoteloPineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste
DeLeesa MeashintubbyVolunteers in Medicine
Debra WhitefootNch'i Wana Housing
Derick Du VivierOregon Health Policy Board - Health Equity Committee
Dolores MartinezEuvalcree
George ConwayDeschutes County Health Services
Kalani RaphaelOregon Pacific Islander Coalition
Kelly GonzalesPortland State University
Kristin MilliganCommunity Volunteer Network
Laurie SkokanProvidence Health & Services
Leslie SuttonOregon Council on Developmental Disabilities
Maleka TaylorThe Miracles Club
Maria LoredoVirginia Garcia Memorial Health Center
Marin ArreolaInterface Network
Muriel DeLaVergne-BrownCrook County Health Department
Musse OlolSomali American Council of Oregon
Nannette Carter-JafriSEIU Local 503 Indigenous People's Caucus
Ruth GulyasLeadingAge Oregon
Safina KoreishiColumbia Pacific CCO
Sandra McDonoughOregon Business & Industry
Shawn BairdMetro West Ambulance Service
Sue StewardNorthwest Portland Area Indian Health Board
Tsering SherpaThe Rosewood Initiative
Zhenya AbbruzzeseAdventist Health

“The COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Committee brings tremendous lived and professional experience to guide OHA’s decisions about vaccine sequencing in a way that upholds OHA’s goal to eliminate health inequities by 2030,” said Cara Biddlecom, OHA deputy public health director.

“Members of this committee represent communities that have been unjustly impacted by COVID-19, including tribal communities and communities of color, and OHA is committed to involving community members in the decision-making processes that affect their lives.”

The committee’s first public meeting is Thursday, Jan. 7, from 9 a.m. to noon. The meeting can be accessed via conference line at 669-254-5252; meeting ID: 160 583 9896.

For more information about the committee, visit the Vaccine Advisory Committee information page. Comments or questions can be emailed to

Stay informed about COVID-19:

Oregon response: The Oregon Health Authority leads the state response.

United States response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention leads the US response.

Global response: The World Health Organization guides the global response.

Article Topic Follows: Coronavirus

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