Health and Human Services and the Department of Defense hold a joint briefing on the Trump administration’s Covid-19 vaccination program, Operation Warp Speed, as the government prepares to distribute doses throughout the country. To access CNBC’s exclusive live video, subscribe to CNBC PRO: The United States Should Be Able To Distribute Enough Doses Of Coronavirus Vaccine To Immune 100 Million People By End Of Month February, President Donald Trump’s Covid-19 vaccine czar said on Wednesday. These will be doses sufficient to protect a “significant portion” of Americans most at risk, namely the elderly, healthcare workers and those with pre-existing conditions, Dr. Moncef Slaoui, who heads the immunization program of The Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed, told reporters at a press briefing. There is a chance that the United States may have more doses than expected this month if Johnson & Johnson’s potential vaccine is cleared by then, Slaoui said, adding that he expects the company releases key late testing data in January. The federal government is expected to ship 6.4 million doses of Pfizer vaccine to jurisdictions across the country within 24 hours after an emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration, Army General Gustave Perna, chief of Operation Warp Speed operations, said at the same briefing. Authorities plan to ship 12.5 million doses of Moderna’s vaccine following an emergency clearance, he added. Planning “is not about getting in front of the EUA,” Perna told reporters. “This ensures that everything is locked down, so that when the decisions of the EUA come, the distribution to the American people becomes immediate.” Wednesday’s briefing came as states prepared to distribute a Covid-19 vaccine in as little as two weeks. Moderna and Pfizer at the end of last month applied for emergency clearances from the FDA for their Covid-19 vaccines. FDA reviews are expected to take a few weeks, and the agency has scheduled a meeting on December 10 to discuss Pfizer’s clearance application. Earlier on Wednesday, the UK became the first country to authorize the Pfizer vaccine for emergency use, marking a new milestone in the global battle against the pandemic. Initial doses will be limited as manufacturing increases, with top U.S. health officials predicting that it will take months to vaccinate anyone wishing to be vaccinated against Covid-19 in the United States. The federal government has made agreements with several drug manufacturers to purchase some of their first doses. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention panel on Tuesday voted 13-1 to give healthcare workers and residents of long-term care facilities in the United States the first doses of the coronavirus vaccine once it is authorized for public use. There are approximately 21 million healthcare workers and 3 million residents of long-term care facilities in the United States, according to the CDC. Medical experts have previously advocated that health workers receive the vaccine first, followed by vulnerable Americans – the elderly, people with pre-existing illnesses and essential workers. Children and young adults should receive the vaccine last. Ahead of the vote, Dr Nancy Messonnier, director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease, said most states and local jurisdictions expect all of their health workers to be vaccinated to take three weeks. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses approximately one month apart. Both vaccines use messenger RNA, or mRNA, technology. It’s a new approach to vaccines that uses genetic material to elicit an immune response. »Subscribe to CNBC TV:» Subscribe to CNBC: »Subscribe to CNBC Classic: Turn to CNBC TV for the latest stock news and analysis. From market futures to live price updates, CNBC is the global leader in business news. The News with Shepard Smith is CNBC’s daily news podcast providing in-depth, non-partisan coverage and perspective on the day’s most important stories. Available at 8:30 p.m. ET / 5:30 p.m. PT daily starting September 30: Connect with CNBC News Online Get the latest news: Follow CNBC on LinkedIn: Follow CNBC News on Facebook: Follow CNBC News on Twitter: Follow CNBC News on Instagram: #CNBC #CNBCTV.
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