First Covid-19 vaccine administered in the US, tweets President Donald Trump
US President Donald Trump on Monday announced the administration of the first Covid-19 vaccine on Twitter as shipments of frozen vials reached the United States to battle the coronavirus disease. Marking the onset of what will be the largest vaccination campaign in the US history, shots made by Pfizer Inc and its German partner BioNTech are the first authorised for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Several other countries also have given their nod of acceptance for the vaccine, including the UK, which started vaccinating last week.
Packed in dry ice to stay at ultra-frozen temperatures, the first of nearly 3 million doses being shipped in staggered batches this week made their way by truck and by plane around the country Sunday from Pfizer’s Kalamazoo, Michigan, factory. Once they arrive at distribution centres, each state directs where the doses go next.
The US will vaccinate health care workers first, who along with nursing home residents, have spent months battling a coronavirus that still is surging in the country and around the world. Authorities are expected to rush against time to rapidly get the vaccine into the arms of millions, not just doctors and nurses but other at-risk health workers such as janitors and food handlers — which will be immediately followed by a second dose three weeks later.
According to FDA – the world’s most strict medical regulator – the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine appears safe and strongly protective. The agency has also laid out the data behind it in a daylong public meeting last week for scientists and consumers alike to see. Experts have pointed out that the shots can cause temporary fever, fatigue and aches as they rev up people’s immune systems, forcing hospitals to stagger employee vaccinations.
(With inputs from Associated Press)
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