Winter storm has delayed shipments of 6 million Covid vaccine doses in the U.S., health officials say

H/O: Covid-19 Response White House press convention

Source: The White House

Massive winter storms throughout the Midwest and Texas have delayed the supply of 6 million Covid-19 vaccine doses affecting each state in the U.S., the nation’s high health officials mentioned Friday.

The backlog represents three days value of delayed shipments, White House senior advisor for Covid response Andy Slavitt mentioned throughout a press briefing.

“Many states have been able to cover some of this delay with existing inventory,” Slavitt mentioned.

The delayed shipments stem from three details in the vaccines distribution chain impacted by the climate, he mentioned. Delivery hubs at UPS, FedEx and McKesson, which have been charged with delivering the doses to the states, have reported staffing shortages.

Slavitt mentioned their employees “have been snowed in and unable to get to work to package” the vaccines, administration kits and different provides.

Road closures have additionally held up the supply of the vaccines between manufacturing websites and transport hubs. On high of that, greater than 2,000 vaccine distribution websites are unable to obtain doses as a result of they’re in areas hampered by energy outages, he mentioned.

Slavitt added that as a result of of strict cold-chain necessities for storing the doses, it is higher to carry again the shipments than to ship them to these locations the place the pictures may expire after three days. He added that the vaccines are “sitting safe and sound in our factories and hubs ready to be shipped” as quickly as the climate improves.

“As weather conditions improve, we are already looking to clear this backlog,” Slavitt mentioned, including that 1.4 million doses are being shipped on Friday. He mentioned the administration anticipates “all the backlog doses will be delivered in the next week.”

“We expect we will be able to manage this backlog and the new production coming online next week,” Slavitt mentioned.

This is breaking information. Please test again for updates.

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