For travelers hoping a COVID-19 vaccine will be available as early as next month, you’ll need to patient. The initial 40 million doses are already largely spoken for and travelers did not make the cut.
COVID-19 Vaccine: Who Will Have Priority?
Public health officials hope to have 20 million doses of the Moderna vaccine and another 20 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine in hand by late December. The U.S. federal government is the launch customer, with a confirmed order of 100 million doses.
According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, President Trump’s top infectious disease expert, those initial doses are reserved for health care workers and those in high-risk categories.
“We hope that we’ll be getting vaccine into people. The recommendation of who that will be will be finalized by the CDC – likely will be health-care workers, as well as people who are at a high risk for serious disease.”
Those at high risk for serious disease will include the most vulnerable senior citizens in nursing homes. Tragically, COVID-19 has ravaged nursing homes across the nation.
You’ll notice international travelers did not make the cut…
All of this is contingent upon FDA approval, though the success of late-stage clinical trials point to a likely approval in the weeks ahead. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told CNBC:
“We will independently call those balls and strikes on the data and evidence, but we’re going to do so as quickly as possible, consistent with just making sure the science, the evidence and the law support authorization.”
Let’s hope the FDA is more competent than the FAA…
Vaccines typically take a decade to prove safety and effectiveness. The fast-tracking of these vaccines is truly unprecedented, and not without some concern. U.S. travelers will have to wait for a vaccine, with preference given to health care workers and the most vulnerable.
Do you have any concerns over a vaccine from Pfizer or Moderna?