NEW YORK (AP) — A federal advisory panel recommended Sunday that people 75 和 older 和 essential workers like firefighters, teachers 和 grocery store workers should be next in line for COVID-19 shots, while a second 疫苗 began rolling out to hospitals as the nation works to get the coronavirus pandemic under control.
的 two developments came amid a vaccination program that began only in the last week 和 has given initial shots to about 556,000 Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control 和 Prevention.
的 COVID-19 疫苗 developed by Pfizer Inc. 和 Germany’s BioNTech already is being distributed, 和 regulators last week gave approval to the one from Moderna Inc. that began shipping Sunday.
Earlier this month, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices said health care workers 和 nursing home residents — about 24 million people — should be at the very front of the line for the 疫苗s.
Sunday’s vote by the panel was who should be next in line, 和 by a vote of 13-1, it decided that it should be people 75 和 older, who number about 20 million, as well as certain front-line workers, who total about 30 million.
的 essential workers include firefighters 和 police; teachers 和 school staff; those working in food, agricultural 和 manufacturing sectors; corrections workers; U.S. Postal Service employees; public transit workers; 和 grocery store workers. 的y are considered at very high risk of infection because their jobs are critical 和 require them to be in regular contact with other people.
的 expert panel’s recommendation next goes to the CDC director 和 to states as guidance to put together vaccination programs. CDC directors have almost always signed off on committee recommendations. No matter what the CDC says, there will be differences from state to state, because various health departments have different ideas about who should be closer to the front of the line.
Federal officials expect that 疫苗 doses will be limited for several months. CDC officials say up to 20 million are projected to start getting shots this month, another 30 million next month, 和 50 million in February. That’s 100 million out of a population of more than 330 million.
Pfizer’s shots were first shipped out a week ago 和 started being used the next day, kicking off the nation’s biggest vaccination drive.
Public health experts say the shots — 和 others in the pipeline — are the only way to stop a virus that has been spreading wildly. Nationwide, more than 219,000 people per day on average test positive for the virus, which has killed over 316,000 in the U.S. 和 nearly 1.7 million worldwide.
Earlier Sunday, trucks left the Olive Branch, Mississippi, factory, near Memphis, Tennessee, with the 疫苗 developed by Moderna 和 the National Institutes of 健康. 的 much-needed shots are expected to be given starting Monday, just three days after the Food 和 Drug Administration authorized their emergency rollout.
In Louisville, Kentucky, UPS driver Todd Elble said his 疫苗 shipment was the “most important load that I’ve hauled” in a 37-year career. His parents contracted COVID-19 in November, 和 his 78-year-old father died. He said the family speculates that his father got infected while traveling on a hunting trip with four other relatives to Wyoming, 和 some are still sick.
“I’m going to take the 疫苗 myself. I’m going to be first in line for my father — I’ll tell you that much — 和 any others that should follow,” he said. “I feel in my heart that everybody should, to help get this stopped.”
Dr. Moncef Slaoui, the chief science adviser to the federal government’s 疫苗 distribution effort, said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that nearly 8 million doses will be distributed Monday, about 5.9 million of the Moderna 疫苗 和 2 million of the Pfizer 疫苗.
的re won’t be enough shots for the general population until spring, so doses will be rationed at least for the next several months. President-elect Joe Biden 本月初承诺 to have 100 million doses distributed in his first 100 days in office, 和 his surgeon general nominee said Sunday that it’s still a realistic goal.
But Vivek Murthy told NBC’s “Meet the Press” it’s more realistic to think it may be midsummer or early fall before 疫苗s are available to the general public, rather than late spring. Murthy said Biden’s team is working toward having the shots available to lower-risk individuals by late spring but doing so requires “everything to go exactly on schedule.”
Meanwhile, Trump’s surgeon general, Jerome Adams, defended the administration’s handling of the Pfizer 疫苗 Sunday, a day after the Army general charge of getting COVID-19 疫苗s across the U.S. 周六道歉 for “miscommunication” with states over the number of doses to be delivered in the early stages of distribution. At least a dozen states reported they would receive a smaller second shipment of the Pfizer 疫苗 than they had been told previously.
Gen. Gustave Perna told reporters in a telephone briefing that he made mistakes by citing numbers of doses that he believed would be ready. Slaoui said the mistake was assuming 疫苗s that had been produced were ready for shipment when there was a two-day delay.
“And unless it’s perfectly right, we will not release 疫苗 doses for usage,” he said. “And, sometimes, there could be small hiccups. 的re have been none, actually, in manufacturing now. 的 hiccup was more into the planning.”
But Adams told CBS’ “Face the Nation” that “the numbers are going to go up 和 down.”
“It absolutely was not poor planning,” he said. “There’s what we plan. 的re’s what we actually allocate. 的re’s what’s delivered, 和 then there’s what’s actually put in people’s arms.”
Adams, who is Black, said he understands that mistrust of the medical community 和 the 疫苗 among Blacks “comes from a real place,” the mistreatment of communities of color. He cited the decades-long Tuskegee experiment in Alabama, where Black men with syphilis were not treated so the disease could be studied.
He also said immigrants in the U.S. illegally should not be denied the 疫苗 because of their legal status because “it’s not ethically right to deny those individuals.”
“I want to reassure people that your information when collected to get your second shot, if you get the Pfizer or Moderna 疫苗, will not be used in any way, shape or form to harm you legally,” Adams said. “That is something that I have been assured of.”
Both the Moderna 疫苗 和 the Pfizer-BioNTech shot require two doses several weeks apart. 的 second dose must be from the same company as the first. Both 疫苗s appeared safe 和 strongly protective in large, still unfinished studies.