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CDC requests 4 states and one city to develop coronavirus vaccine distribution plans

Plans will be shared with other states to assist them in planning vaccine distribution. Discussions in the states this week offer some of the first details of the federal government’s plans at a time when the information shared by the administration is limited and often confusing. The United States is planning the largest vaccination campaign ever undertaken, a massive proposal that requires extraordinary coordination, planning and communication.

U.S. officials said this week that Operation Warp Speed, the administration̵

7;s efforts to accelerate the development of coronavirus countermeasures, is being monitored to deliver tens of millions of vaccine doses in January.

In planning discussions, one of the hottest topics involves freezers. At least one vaccine candidate is expected to need storage at extremely cold temperatures, about minus-70 degrees Celsius. A top CDC official said the state immunization official on Wednesday said it was probably not expected to buy special freezers. But if a vaccine is approved by the Food and Drug Administration that requires such cold storage, states should prepare sites for mass vaccination clinics because doctors’ offices are unlikely to store and manage those shots.

On Friday, the Department of Defense and Health and Human Services announced that McKesson Corporation will be the center of distribution of covid-19 vaccines and related supplies. The CDC is conducting an existing contract option with McKesson to support vaccine distribution, a statement to HHS said. McKesson also distributed the H1N1 vaccine during the 2009-2010 H1N1 pandemic. McKesson will work under CDC guidelines to ship covid-19 vaccines to administration sites, the statement said.

Although President Trump has repeatedly stated that the military will deliver the vaccines, the Defense Department “will not actually distribute or deliver the vaccines themselves,” said Paul Mango, deputy chief of staff for HHS policy, told reporters at a discovery Thursday. The Department of Defense will handle labor logistics, including the acquisition of raw materials, the establishment of factories and training workers.

“With a few exceptions, our commercial distribution partners are responsible for handling all vaccines,” Mango said in an email Thursday. In some cases, commercial distributors can provide vaccines to private organizations, such as mobile vaccination units that go to nursing nurses, he said.

In recent months, state and federal officials need to know how to transport and store vaccines, how to identify priority groups to receive first doses and how to monitor individuals who may have a second dose, if necessary.

North Dakota officials said they had been working on a plan for several weeks. In addition to a strategy for vaccinating the general population, they are working with the CDC on ways to reach the American Indian population, according to a statement from Molly Howell, North Dakota immunization program manager. Native Americans and other colored communities are not valued by covid-19, which has a higher rate of hospitalization and death than White Americans.

But communities tend to have lower vaccination rates than Whites, and experts say better techniques are needed to increase the use of a covid-19 vaccine.

In a letter dated August 4 and sent to immunization and preparedness officials, the CDC said it had made several assumptions for their planning.

Vaccine distribution is centrally managed but can be handled by more than one distributor. Distribution may be expanded to include additional health care organizations, such as pharmacies, hospitals, public-health clinics and physician offices.

States should assume the vaccine is distributed directly to providers. Covid-19 vaccine providers must enroll in their constituent immunization program to receive doses. Needles and syringes and a limited amount of face masks and face shields were distributed to providers of “proportional federal government at no cost,” the letter sent to states.

The amount of vaccine allocated to each jurisdiction is based on many factors, including population size, letter status.

Recommendations which groups should receive vaccines may change, depending on the characteristics of each vaccine, supply and epidemiology of the disease.

At a meeting with state immunization officials and other experts on Wednesday, Nancy Messonnier, who heads the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, emphasized the need for urgency and flexibility in completing plans in October 1, the first thing he said vaccines were available.

“We need states to have draft plans even if the draft plans are not perfect,” he told the group. The CDC and other agencies will provide state officials with additional technical expertise, he said. “But frankly, we’re not running out of time. If the vaccine is available by October 1, which is likely to happen, we need to have plans in advance,” Messonnier said, acknowledging that “everything about this event is not still happened. “

Other US officials said such a scenario in October is not entirely likely.

“It will be amazing,” National Institutes of Health director Francis Collins said at the end of Thursday HHS. The only way it could happen, he said, was if one of the phase 3 trials was done to enroll volunteers “at full record speed,” and the vaccine was considered safe and effective by the FDA even before signing. all volunteers.

“That is a number of dislikes stacked above each other. I do not expect to see, based on what we scientists know, that we are at a point where the FDA will have the opportunity to make such a judgment until further notice. bigger than October 1, “Collins said.” Maybe November, December is my best bet. “

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