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Trump administration expected to change course on vaccine distribution

January 12, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 49.8%. 2 min read.

The Department of Health and Human Services is expected to announce sweeping changes Tuesday in vaccine rollout guidelines in an effort to boost the lagging number of vaccinations in the first month.

The Trump administration plans to release reserved second doses immediately, a senior administration official tells CNN -- a plan already announced by President-elect Joe Biden that was first reported by CNN.

The change in guidelines, which is expected to be announced at a noon briefing Tuesday by Operation Warp Speed, is a significant shift from the approach taken by the Trump administration which had previously balked at releasing all available doses.

"If President-Elect Biden is calling for the distribution of vaccines knowing that there would not be a second dose available, that decision is without science or data and is contrary to the FDA's approved label," OWS spokesman Michael Pratt said Friday in light of Biden's announcement.

"If President-elect Biden is suggesting that the maximum number of doses should be made available, consistent with ensuring that a second dose of vaccine will be there when the patient shows up, then that is already happening. "

Last week, two top officials from the FDA said anyone who receives those vaccines needs both doses, dismissing the idea of stretching the supply by allowing just one dose or cutting doses in half.

They also dismissed other ideas for stretching the vaccine supply and said people who are speculating about the possibility of making do with just one dose or cutting doses in half are misinterpreting the data.

"We have been following the discussions and news reports about reducing the number of doses, extending the length of time between doses, changing the dose (half-dose), or mixing and matching vaccines in order to immunize more people against COVID-19," FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn and Dr. Peter Marks, who heads FDA's vaccine division, said in a statement at the time.

Nearly 9 million people have received their first doses of vaccine and nearly 25. 5 million doses of vaccine have now been distributed, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Monday.

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