It’s still unknown when a COVID-19 vaccine might be available in the United States. But when one is first approved, there may only be 10 million to 15 million doses available, which may be enough to cover around 3% to 5% of the U.S. population. That’s according to estimates from Operation Warp Speed, the government’s vaccine project, published in a draft framework from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.
There are many who would benefit from the protection a safe and effective vaccine would afford; policymakers must decide who gets the vaccine first.
A vaccine advisory group to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is meeting Tuesday to consider how to prioritize distribution of a future COVID-19 vaccine. But a vote on who will get a vaccine first, originally planned for Tuesday, has been delayed.
Priority groups include “those who have the highest risk of exposure, those who are at risk for severe morbidity and mortality … [and also] the workforce that’s needed for us to maintain our both health and economic status,” said Dr. Grace Lee, a pediatrics professor at Stanford Children’s Hospital and a member of the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices or ACIP. Lee spoke for herself, not the committee.
Read more at NPR.