Coronavirus

US likely to start COVID-19 vaccinations by Dec 11: Reports

COVID-19 vaccinations

The United States hopes to start vaccinating its citizens likely from next month even as the country is battling with spike in daily number of Corona cases. On Sunday, the White House vaccine czar stated the first American citizen to receive a COVID-19 vaccine could get it as soon as December 11 or 12.

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His comment came days after American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech submitted an application to the US Food and Drug Administration for emergency use authorisation for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate. Pfizer had submitted an application on Friday. As per a PTI report, the FDA vaccine advisory committee is slated to meet on December 10. “Our plan is to be able to ship vaccines to the immunisation sites within 24 hours from the approval, so I would expect maybe on day two after approval, on the 11th or on the 12th of December,” Dr Moncef Slaoui, the head of the US coronavirus vaccine programme told CNN.

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“Hopefully, the first people will be immunized across the United States, across all states, in all the areas where the State Departments of Health will have told us where to deliver the vaccine,” Slaoui said. The US has recorded more than 12 million cases and 255,000 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, the highest tolls registered anywhere in the world.

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Slaoui said that, if authorised by the FDA, the vaccine could be rolled out the next day.

He also said that based on plans, the amount of the population who need to be vaccinated for life to return to normal is likely to happen in May.

Slaoui said that with the level of efficacy that has been shown in both Pfizer and Moderna”s vaccines, “70 per cent or so of the population being immunised would allow for true herd immunity to take place, that is likely to happen somewhere in the month of May, or something like that based on our plans.” “Most people need to be immunised before we can go back to a normal life,” he said.

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