Last Wednesday, Pfizer’s vaccination was approved for use in the UK, and the U.S. is expected to be following suit. Emergency FDA approval was sought for Moderna, for initial doses of a similar vaccine. These vaccine approvals and developments are moving at light speed, which is unheard of in the industry. But one year into the pandemic, this move seems necessary.
Now that vaccines are available, who will get the first doses and how long will you have to wait to get vaccinated yourself?
Despite governments’ and companies’ efforts to dispense as many doses as possible, there is a realistic challenge when it comes to supplying the vaccine to everyone. With over 330 million people in the U.S., Pfizer expects to send about 25 million doses to the U.S., which means that is only enough to vaccinate about 12.5 million Americans. Think about it in those terms: that’s roughly the populations of Los Angeles and New York City. For Moderna, they are expected to dispatch 15 million doses, enough to vaccinate 7.5 million. The reality stands that most people in the U.S. and worldwide will have to wait several months before they may have access to the vaccine.
We now have clearer answers as to who will get these initial doses. The CDC qualified what they called a “first priority group” and that constitutes healthcare workers, nursing home residents, and employees. They come up to about 20 million U.S. doctors, nurses, as well as lab technicians, hospital staff, and EMT.
More information is expected to roll out at the beginning of 2021, so until then, sit tight, wash your hands, and wear a mask.