US to purchase additional 200 million coronavirus vaccine doses
(Sourced from PTI)
US President Joe Biden on Tuesday announced the purchase of additional 200 million doses of coronavirus vaccines as the country reached 25 million COVID-19 infections. After reviewing the current vaccine supply and manufacturing plans, Biden announced that his administration will increase overall weekly vaccination distribution to states and tribal territories from 8.6 million doses to a minimum of 10 million doses.
"Starting next week, that's an increase of 1.4 million doses per week," Biden said adding that these are being distributed to states based on population. Reiterating his ambitious goal of 100 million shots in 100 days, he said, "The end goal is to beat COVID-19."
Biden said, "We will soon be able to confirm the purchase of an additional 100 million doses for each of the two FDA authorized vaccines, Pfizer and Moderna." He added that this is 200 million more than what the federal government had previously secured, not in hand yet, but ordered. "We expect these additional 200 million doses to be delivered this summer," he said.
Biden said, "This is a wartime undertaking. I have directed the team to be ready to exercise all of the authorities I have under the Defense Production Act and expedite these vaccines." "We are using the act to launch full-scale wartime effort to address the COVID-19 vaccine supply shortages we inherited from the previous administration," he added.
Biden said, "These steps to increase supply come on top of the steps we took last week to get more people vaccinated for free, to create more places for them to get vaccinated, and to mobilize more medical teams to get shots in people's arms."
Observing that there are enough vaccine doses to fully vaccinate 300 million Americans by the end of the summer, he stressed that over 400,000 people in the country have already died from coronavirus in the past year. The President has also directed the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to start the first federally supported community vaccination centers.
Biden said, "We are working to make vaccines available to thousands of local pharmacies beginning in early February, a couple of weeks off, and that will enormously expand our reach."