“It’s been slowed down in some places going to a grinding halt,” Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said in an interview with MSNBC Thursday.
“We’re just going to have to make up for it as soon as the weather lifts a bit, the ice melts and we can get the trucks out, and the people out and getting the vaccine into people’s arms,” he said. “We’re going to just have to make up for it, namely do double time when this thing clears up.”
A number of states have reported delays in vaccine deliveries and distribution, forcing providers to cancel or reschedule appointments for vaccinations. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on Thursday said more than 2,000 vaccine sites are in areas suffering from power outages.
Houston, hit with both power outages and water problems during the storm, plans to resume giving vaccinations Saturday and Sunday, the city’s health department said in a release Thursday.
The second doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were recommended to be administered 21 days and 28 days after the first, respectively. So, if your appointment to receive a second dose was canceled due to weather, don’t panic. There’s still time.
Both UPS and FedEx have told CNN they’re working to get vaccines delivered.
UPS says it has “extensive contingency plans” in place to complete vaccine deliveries, despite the winter storm. Spokesperson Glenn Zaccara told CNN the company was in “regular and frequent contact” with federal agencies and vaccine manufacturers, with talks occurring “often hourly.”
Meantime, FedEx said it’s prioritizing coronavirus vaccine deliveries, and it’s working with the parties waiting on shipments. But “prolonged severe weather is continuing to impact much of the FedEx network.”
Here’s how many people have been vaccinated
His promise echoes earlier announcements that the US was on track to have enough vaccines for 300 million Americans by the end of July.
Actually vaccinating all those people will likely take longer, per Fauci. He told CNN, “It may take an additional couple of months actually, maybe toward the end of the summer, to get everybody vaccinated.”
Work also continues toward making vaccines available to younger patients.
Pfizer/BioNTech’s vaccine has been granted emergency use authorization by the US Food and Drug Administration for people age 16 and older, but the companies expect to start Covid-19 vaccine studies for children between the ages of 5 and 11 in the next couple months, according to a news release.
Additionally, the companies say they have plans to study the vaccine in children younger than 5 later this year.
An ongoing trial…