Pentagon reveals plans to distribute first 44,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine as early as next week

A member prepares a vaccine on the Pittsburgh International Airport Air Reserve Station, Pennsylvania, April 11, 2019.

Joshua J. Seybert | U.S. Air Force

WASHINGTON — The Pentagon outlined Wednesday its preliminary steps of the company’s plan to distribute and administer Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine to the greater than 2 million lively obligation, reserve and civilian protection staff — a colossal logistical feat that can first give attention to immunizing precedence populations in 16 areas.

As early as next week, the Department of Defense is slated to begin distributing its first 44,000 doses of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine.

In the first of a three-phase method, the Pentagon will provide the vaccine at 13 navy installations inside the U.S. and three overseas to health-care suppliers, emergency providers, public security personnel as properly as choose service members and their dependents.

The vaccine requires a two-dose routine to guarantee the very best stage of safety from Covid-19 with a second, greater dosage administered a couple of month later. Pfizer’s vaccine requires ultra-cold storage that can maintain the doses at minus 94 levels Fahrenheit.

“We chose locations with extra cold storage capability, sizable local priority populations and with medical staffs large enough to administer. We chose locations for military services, including active and reserve components,” defined Army Lt. Gen. Dr. Ronald Place, the Pentagon’s Health Agency director.

“As part of this initial phase of health-care workers, emergency responders, etcetera, we do have a very small set of very visible senior leaders that will volunteer to take the vaccine as one way to help message the safety and efficacy and to encourage all eligible personnel to take the vaccine,” Place stated.

Defense officers added that the vaccine, at the moment, shouldn’t be obligatory however is strongly inspired.

“When the vaccine is first issued under the emergency authorization, it is typically on a voluntary basis,” Place stated, including that his recommendation was to take the vaccine and within the interim apply CDC public well being mitigation efforts.

Defense officers downplayed considerations that the coronavirus poses a big danger to U.S. service members who should not half of the preliminary spherical of vaccinations.

Read extra: Coronavirus poses low danger to troops and navy logistics, Pentagon says

“We’ve been fortunate, a large number of our forces are in the age criteria and health status where we’ve fared better than others,” Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman stated when requested if there have been considerations about solely a small inhabitants of U.S. navy forces receiving the vaccine.

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