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Federal government details plans to distribute free Covid-19 vaccines

September 16, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

A health worker injects a woman during clinical trials for a Covid-19 vaccine at Research Centers of America in Hollywood, Florida, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. Drugmakers racing to produce Covid-19 vaccines pledged to avoid shortcuts on science as they face pressure to rush a shot to market. Photographer: Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The federal government released plans detailing how it will distribute Covid-19 vaccines once they've been OK'd by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Operation Warp Speed aims to have Covid-19 vaccines moving to administration sites within 24 hours of an FDA license or emergency use authorization, an official said.

Paul Ostrowski, the deputy chief of supply, production and distribution for the federal government's Covid-19 vaccine effort, said during a briefing.

The CDC vaccine program playbook says that for planning purposes, state and local health agencies should assume "limited COVID-19 vaccine doses may be available by early November 2020" if a vaccine is authorized or licensed by the FDA.

"The hard part is being able to get the databases to talk with one another," he said, for example, so that he could get a vaccine at a public health center and then get the correct second dose weeks later, perhaps at a pharmacy in a different location.

"The federal government is procuring hundreds of millions of doses of safe and effective vaccines, and has contracted with McKesson for purposes of vaccine distribution, such that no American will be charged for either the COVID-19 vaccine or its distribution," the strategy document says.

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