Health Care Workers, Nursing Home Residents To Be Prioritized For COVID-19 Vaccine

December 4, 2020 by Christen Aldrich

Filed under COVID-19 for Employers, COVID-19 for the Workforce

Last modified December 23, 2020

As stated in this article from NPR, a federal advisory committee to the CDC voted Tuesday to recommend who should get COVID-19 vaccines first, once one is authorized for use. It was recommended that the first COVID-19 vaccines should go to health care workers and residents of long-term care facilities, including nursing homes and assisted living.

It is currently anticipated that a vaccine will be authorized by the FDA by mid-December, and the CDC estimates that most people in these high-priority groups could be fully vaccinated by early next year. But because supplies will be short in the first few weeks after that authorization, individual health care and long-term care facilities will likely need to determine their own priority schedules for vaccination once they’ve acquired the vaccine.

The CDC estimates that 48 million doses will be needed to vaccinate these groups, which account for about 24 million people. It is also anticipated that 40 million doses could be available by the end of December, with 5 million to 10 million available each week afterward. The recommendations from the independent advisory committee now go to CDC Director Robert Redfield for final approval.

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