Dwindling Vaccine Supply Hinders Plans To Speed Up Distribution
“The brutal truth is it’s going to take months before we can get the majority of Americans vaccinated,” President Joe Biden said. Dr. Anthony Fauci said he still thinks that 70-85% of all Americans could be inoculated by the end of summer.
The US Can Vaccinate Up To 85% Of US Adults And Begin A Return To Normal By Fall, Fauci Says
Despite challenges with the distribution and administration of Covid-19 vaccines, the US "can and should" vaccinate 70-85% of US adults by the end of summer, infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said Thursday. If officials do hit that benchmark, it could means a semblance of normalcy by the fall, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said. (Holcombe, 1/22)
Covid-19 Vaccine Supply Is Running Low. Here’s How Biden Hopes To Fix That
The Biden administration is willing to consider almost anything to boost the nation’s dwindling supply of Covid-19 vaccines. A new strategy document released Thursday, totaling nearly 200 pages, offers the first clear list of the options President Biden has before him, though it doesn’t specifically say he’ll actually take all of the steps. (Florko, 1/21)
Biden’s Covid Team Grapples With A Basic Question: Where’s All The Vaccine?
As President Joe Biden spent his first full day in office issuing executive actions aimed at containing the coronavirus, his administration scrambled to get a handle on a key unanswered question: How much vaccine is actually available? Conflicting accounts of supply totals have bedeviled federal and state health officials, complicating the new administration's sweeping pandemic response plan and casting fresh doubts on how long it will take Biden to bring the virus under control. (Cancryn and Pager, 1/21)
The New York Times:
Why Biden Inherited A Covid-19 Vaccine Supply Unlikely To Grow Before April
[F]ederal health officials and corporate executives agree that it will be impossible to increase the immediate supply of vaccines before April because of lack of manufacturing capacity. The administration should first focus, experts say, on fixing the hodgepodge of state and local vaccination centers that has proved incapable of managing even the current flow of vaccines. President Biden’s goal of one million shots a day for the next 100 days, they say, is too low and will arguably leave tens of millions of doses unused. Data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that the nation has already reached that milestone pace. About 1.1 million people received shots last Friday, after an average of 911,000 people a day received them on the previous two days. (LaFraniere and Weiland, 1/21)
The New York Times:
U.S. Vaccine Supply: What To Know
The two companies with authorized vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer, have each promised to provide the United States with 100 million vaccine doses by the end of March, or enough for 100 million people to get the necessary two shots. But that doesn’t mean those 200 million doses are sitting in a factory warehouse somewhere, waiting to be shipped. Both companies are manufacturing the doses at full capacity, and are collectively releasing between 12 million and 18 million doses each week. (Thomas, 1/21)
Covid Vaccine: Experts Say Biden's Strategy Could Benefit From Good Timing
As President Joe Biden takes steps to try to ramp up vaccine production, experts say the biggest boon to his administration's vaccine strategy could simply be good timing. The President on Thursday directed federal agencies to use "all available legal authorities, including the Defense Production Act" to boost vaccine supply, but experts tell CNN that Biden's team may be positioned for success even if it does relatively little, as the administration absorbs a flawed vaccine-distribution effort but at the same moment manufacturers hit a stride and states work out the kinks in their own distribution plans. (Murray and Holmes, 1/22)
In related news —
Fauci: We Are Not 'Starting From Scratch' On Vaccine Distribution
Anthony Fauci said the Biden administration is not starting from square one on its COVID-19 vaccine distribution, contradicting reports that Trump officials did not leave them with a plan. "We're certainly not starting from scratch, because there is activity going on in the distribution," Fauci told reporters during an appearance in the White House briefing room. (Weixel, 1/21)
Biden COVID-19 Czar Calls Trump Vaccine Planning 'So Much Worse Than We Could Have Imagined'
President Biden's coronavirus team is faulting the Trump administration for what it's calling a lack of planning in the government's COVID-19 response that is now forcing officials to ramp up federal action. "What we're inheriting is so much worse than we could have imagined," Jeff Zients, Biden's coronavirus response coordinator, said on a call with reporters. (Sullivan, 1/21)