The companies said that the distribution could begin immediately for governments around the world to decide who will receive the vaccine and in what order, if the relevant authorities approve these vaccines in the coming weeks.
Here is a framework of the steps that might take this process:
When do companies launch the vaccine?
Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca have already started manufacturing vaccines. Pfizer said it will produce enough this year to immunize 25 million people, Moderna will produce enough to immunize 10 million, while AstraZeneca will produce enough for more than 100 million people.
The US Department of Defense and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will manage distribution in the United States and will likely begin in mid-December with an initial 6.4 million doses available across the country.
The health authorities in Britain intend to start distributing the vaccine as soon as possible, and that is expected to happen in December.
In the European Union, it is up to each of the 27 member states to start distributing vaccines to their own populations.
Who will get approved vaccine in the United States? And when?
The CDC said that when the US Food and Drug Administration approves the vaccine, it will be the first to receive about 21 million people working in health care, in addition to 3 million people living in health care centers for long periods.
The next group is likely to be the 87 million basic category workers who work in jobs that cannot be completed from home. These include firefighters and police, and workers in education, transportation, food, agriculture and food services. The next group of priorities is about 100 million adults with severe disease and 53 million over the age of 65 who are more likely to have the disease.
And public health officials in the United States said that vaccines will generally be available to most Americans in pharmacies, medical clinics and doctors’ offices in April, so that the vaccine will be available to anyone who wants to be vaccinated by the end of June.
It is unclear when the vaccine will be available to children. Pfizer and Biontec began testing their vaccine in volunteers at the age of 12.
When will the vaccine be available in other countries?
Mechanisms exist in the European Union, Britain, Japan, Canada and Australia for rapid adoption of vaccines.
It is expected that a large proportion of the doses that AstraZeneca will produce this year will go to Britain, where health officials have said that after the vaccine is approved they may start immunizing people in December. And on top of their priorities are the workers and residents of nursing homes. In Europe, the European Union’s Medicines Approval Authority said it could issue its opinion on the safety of the vaccine in December.
Most countries have said that the first batch of the vaccine will be intended for the elderly, vulnerable and frontline workers such as doctors. Countries say they will buy the vaccine through the joint procurement plan run by the European Commission, which has concluded deals for 6 different vaccines and nearly 2 billion doses. Distribution schedules vary, and most countries still draw up plans for distribution and vaccination.
Italy expects to receive the first batches of the Pfizer-Bionic and AstraZeneca vaccines early next year. Spain intends
The vaccination of its citizens will start in January. In Bulgaria, the Inspector General of Health said he expected the first shipments to arrive in March or April. Hungary’s Health Minister said the doses will arrive in the spring at the earliest.
As for Germany, to which Biontech belongs, it expects to launch the vaccine in early 2021 in mass immunization centers in exhibition halls, airports and party halls. Germany will also use mobile teams to service nursing homes.
Front-line health care workers will be vaccinated more than others for infection with (Covid-19) before others.
When will developing countries get vaccines?
The Kovacs program, led by the World Health Organization and the Jaffe Vaccine Group, which aims to pool funds from rich countries and non-profit organizations, to purchase vaccines and distribute them to dozens of poor countries, has raised two billion dollars.
The first goal of the program is to immunize 3 percent of people in those countries, with the percentage eventually rising to 20 percent. The program has signed a preliminary agreement to purchase the AstraZeneca vaccine, which does not require storage in special highly-cooled devices such as the Pfizer vaccine.
It is expected that less wealthy countries in Africa and Southeast Asia, such as India, will receive the vaccine at reduced or free prices under this program in 2021, although this is not certain. Others, such as Latin American countries, may buy the vaccine via
Kovacs. Several countries are also working to conclude agreements with pharmaceutical companies.
How much will the vaccine cost?
The vaccine manufacturers have negotiated varying prices, which are not all disclosed. Governments have paid sums ranging from a few dollars for a dose of AstraZeneca to $ 50 for a two-dose Pfizer vaccine. Many countries said they would cover the costs of vaccinating their own residents.
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