My1sttoday: President Biden says US will have enough doses to vaccinate every American by July 2021, as reported on Thursday. Working on the commitment that was promised on January.
Speaking at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Biden said the purchases will increase supply by 50 percent, to 600 million doses.
President Biden, who always put on his mask, said the companies are stepping up delivery timelines, so 100 million doses that were promised by the end of June will now be delivered by the end of May.
He said the administration has secured enough doses from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech to inoculate every American by the end of July.
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According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. paid approximately $2 billion to Pfizer for the additional doses, and $1.65 billion to Moderna.
The U.S. has now pre-purchased enough vaccine doses to inoculate the population twice over.
However, the extra doses will not be immediately available, meaning that the existing supply shortages plaguing the rollout are likely to continue, at least in the short term.
Instead, the extra 200 million doses will provide a backstop for when the initial supplies are exhausted.
In his remarks Thursday, Biden faulted former President Trump for not doing enough to plan for the vaccination rollout.
“My predecessor – to be very blunt about it – did not do his job in getting ready for the massive challenge of vaccinating hundreds of millions of Americans,” President Biden said.
Additional vaccine supply is also expected to come from Johnson & Johnson. The company’s single-shot coronavirus vaccine is set to be reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration later this month.
It’s also much easier to store; the shot is estimated to remain stable for two years at minus 4 degrees Fahrenheit, and will remain stable for at least three months in most standard refrigerators at temperatures of 36 to 46 degrees.
It still expects to meet its commitment of supplying 100 million doses by the middle of this year.