On Friday the FDA issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to Pfizer for its COVID-19 vaccine, the first authorization for a COVID-19 vaccine in the United States. Operation Warp Speed and private sector partners have begun to distribute the first allocation of doses to sites designated by the public health jurisdictions and five federal agencies with which OWS and CDC have been working to plan distribution.
For the first round of vaccinations, certain populations are being prioritized. Residents of SNFs, LTCHs, and ALFs, along with front-line healthcare workers will have access to the vaccine before the general public.
In addition to the vaccines purchased from Pfizer, the Trump Administration has also ordered 100 million mRNA vaccines from Moderna. Moderna’s vaccine does not yet have an EUA from the FDA, as clinical trials are still ongoing.
To ensure widespread usage of the vaccine, efforts are being made to ensure that all Americans will have access to the COVID-19 vaccine at no charge. According to CMS Administrator Seema Verma: “As we approach more widespread distribution, all Americans can take comfort in the fact that CMS has laid the groundwork to guarantee that every American can get the vaccine for free.”
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