- Pfizer is planning to deliver 200 million COVID vaccine doses to the US by May.
- Pfizer has managed to ramp up vaccine production significantly in recent weeks. Early on, Pfizer didn’t think it would be able to deliver 200 million vaccine doses until July 31.
- President Biden has promised that all Americans will have access to a coronavirus vaccine by spring.
Pfizer today announced that it plans to deliver 200 million doses of its coronavirus vaccine to the US by May. Previously, Pfizer said that it was aiming to deliver 200 million vaccine doses to the US by July 31, so this is clearly a step in the right direction. More broadly, the accelerated schedule is all the more reason to believe that everyone in the United States who wants a COVID vaccine will be able to get one by spring, as President Biden promised just a few days ago.
“I think we’ll be able to do that this spring,” Biden told reporters recently. “It’s going to be a logistical challenge that exceeds anything we’ve ever tried in this country, but I think we can do that.”
What’s more, with Johnson & Johnson’s planning to file for an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) with the FDA very soon, the overall supply of COVID vaccine doses in the US is poised to increase drastically in the near future. And while Johnson & Johnson’s COVID vaccine is slightly less effective than Pfizer and Moderna’s, it only requires one dose and doesn’t demand stringent refrigeration to remain potent. Further, with more contagious variants of the coronavirus now making their way into the US, the vaccine rollout as a whole must expand.
To date, the U.S. has administered 32.8 million doses out of a supply of 49.9 million doses. Currently, 8% of the U.S. population has received a single dose while 1.9% of the population has received two doses. Notably, the vaccination rate in the U.S. is rising steadily and now stands at about 1.3 million doses per day.
In light of the above, Dr. Fauci remains confident that the vaccine rollout is poised to “get better very quickly.”
Addressing some of the inefficiencies that have plagued the COVID-19 vaccine rollout thus far, Fauci said the following during an interview on CNN this week:
Obviously, we are aware of those problems that are existing and, as you know, President Biden has made this his really top priority to try to smooth all of that out with any number of mechanisms, be it making sure as we get vaccines in, we can get community vaccine centers, get them better allocated to the pharmacies, and even, in some respects, getting mobile units to go out into poorly accessible areas.
So we’re aware that there are problems out there. But as the President has said, the issue that we’re going to do is not complain about them, but try to fix them. So we admit they are there. But we will try to make them straightened out.
As a final point, new COVID mutations from the UK and South Africa made their way into the U.S. in recent weeks and officials are hoping that the vaccination rollout will be able to outpace the spread of these more contagious COVID strains.