Vice President Mike Pence and Second Lady Karen Pence are set to publicly receive a COVID-19 vaccine on Friday.
The event is intended to promote the safety and efficacy of the vaccine and build confidence among the American people, according to the White House.
Surgeon General Jerome Adams will join Pence and Karen and will also receive the vaccine. This event will take place at the White House. Additional details about the Vice President’s event are forthcoming, the White House said in a statement.
On Tuesday, Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said President Donald Trump is also “absolutely open to taking the vaccine…as soon as his medical team determines it’s best.”
“But his priority is frontline workers, those in long-term care facilities,” she told reporters.
A massive coronavirus vaccination effort kicked off nationwide on Monday, with Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine shipments sent to all 50 states.
Health and Human Service Secretary Alex M. Azar said at a news conference that the vaccine is 94.5 percent effective in reducing the incidence of the disease and that vaccine confidence among people is surging.
“For next week, we have allocated another approximately two million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine,” he told reporters.
If Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine is authorized by the Food and Drug Administration in the coming days, Operation Warp Speed will have allocated nearly 5.9-million doses of the vaccine, Azar noted. A key advisory panel of the FDA is scheduled to meet today to decide if it can recommend Moderna’s vaccine candidate for emergency use.
Meanwhile Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, opined that Moderna’s vaccine could receive Emergency Use Authorization on Thursday.
Azar said OWS has supported two authorized antibody treatments, which can help prevent hospitalization, and help patients at the highest risk for severe disease — those who are 65 and older and individuals who have other medical conditions that put them at risk for hospitalization because of COVID-19.
In the meantime, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a new emergency use authorization for the first fully at-home diagnostic test for COVID-19 that does not require a prescription. The test will cost about $30, and the company that makes it expects to be able to make millions of the tests per month in the coming year, Azar said.
“Even with the emergence of these new tools, we are not at the finish line yet, especially as we approach the holidays,” he cautioned.
Gen. Gustave F. Perna, chief operating officer of OWS, said, “Tomorrow, we’re going to be at 886 additional locations in the United States, so there is a steady drumbeat cadence of [the] delivery of vaccines out to the American people”.
Perna said OWS is aggressively working on deliveries of the vaccine to Long Term Care facilities and health care homes.
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