Health officials in all 50 states have been notified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to prepare to distribute a coronavirus vaccine by late October or early November.
The vaccines will first be made available to healthcare workers, essential workers, national security officials, long-term care facility residents and high-risk racial and ethnic groups, CNN reports.
The documents sent to public health officials across the nation on Aug. 27 outline scenarios for distributing to two candidates described as Vaccine A and Vaccine B.
The CDC noted in its guidance that “limited Covid-19 vaccine doses may be available by early November 2020,” before clinical trials have been completed.
The plans also lay out technical specifications for shipping, mixing, storage and administration at hospitals, mobile clinics and facilities offering initial access to the vaccine to the initial targeted groups.
“The Covid-19 vaccine landscape is evolving and uncertain, and these scenarios may evolve as more information is available,” the agency said in one of the scenario documents.
Critics are accusing President Trump of rushing the vaccine for political gain.
“This timeline of the initial deployment at the end of October is deeply worrisome for the politicization of public health and the potential safety ramifications,” said Saskia Popescu, an infection prevention epidemiologist based in Arizona. “It’s hard not to see this as a push for a pre-election vaccine.”
An earlier report on theGRIO noted that Trump believes, without offering any proof, that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is intentionally slowing down the testing of COVID-19 vaccines to hurt his chances of reelection in November.
In a tweet posted on Aug. 22, Trump said that the FDA is part of the deep state and they are manipulating drug companies into slowing down their enrollment of test subjects, thus delaying an approved vaccine, according to Reuters.
“The deep state, or whoever, over at the FDA is making it very difficult for drug companies to get people in order to test the vaccines and therapeutics,” Trump write.” Obviously, they are hoping to delay the answer until after November 3rd. Must focus on speed, and saving lives! @SteveFDA”
CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said Wednesday that one or more coronavirus vaccines could be available before the end of the year.
“Right now I will say we’re preparing earnestly for what I anticipate will be reality … that there’ll be one or more vaccines available for us in November, December — and we have to figure out how to make sure they’re distributed in a fair and equitable way across the country,” Redfield said during an interview with Yahoo Finance.
Redfield informed governors in a letter last month that permits would soon be requested to build vaccine distribution centers, and he reportedly wants them to fast track permit approvals.
Meanwhile, three vaccines are reportedly in Phase 3 trials in the United States.
“I believe that by the time we get to the end of this calendar year that we will feel comfortable that we do have a safe and effective vaccine,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
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