Although more infectious versions are spreading in the United States, top health officials on Sunday noted notes of optimism that the supply of both vaccines and the rate of vaccination would steadily increase.
The nation’s top infectious disease physician, Dr. “Demand clearly outstrips supply right now,” Anthony S. Fauci said on the NBC program “Meet the Press”.
“I can tell you that things are going to get better, as we do in February to March, in April, because the number of vaccine doses that will be available will increase substantially.”
There has been a recent increase in the number of daily administered shots in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that more than 2.2 million doses were given on Saturday, and 1.6 million on Friday. It brought the latest seven-day average to 1.4 million per day, which goes to President Biden of the new target of 1.5 million shots per day.
In addition, the supply of vaccines – although still far below demand – is increasing. Federal officials recently increased shipments to the states by 10.5 million a week, as Modern and Pfizer gradually increase production. The two companies have struck deals to supply the United States with a combined 400 million doses – enough to vaccinate 200 million people over the summer.
Pfizer recently stated that it would now deliver its dose on time two months before May, as it is now counting an additional dose in each vial it is producing. And Modern is considering a production change that would allow it to increase the number of doses in its vials from 15 to 10.
Officials are also relying on the Food and Drug Administration, authorizing a one-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson later this month. Although that company will initially provide the United States with only a few million doses, production is expected to increase significantly by April. Other vaccines from Novavax and AstraZeneca may be authorized for US use in the spring, increasing supply.
Authorities are rushing to vaccinate as many people as possible to spread more infectious variants of the virus that were previously identified in Britain and South Africa. According to a new study, the version known as B.1.1.7 from Britain is spreading rapidly in the US, with its circulation doubling every 10 days. The CDC said it could become the dominant form of the virus in the United States by March.
While this variant is worrisome because it is more transmissible than earlier variants, vaccine developers are more concerned about the variant discovered in South Africa, known as B.1.351, as it is less effective than current vaccines. makes. Several manufacturers have stated that they were solving the problem by developing new versions of their vaccines, which could act as booster shots. The Food and Drug Administration has said that it is working on a plan to allow those new vaccine versions to be authorized.
Developers of AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford Vaccine said on Sunday that they hoped to have a revised version of their vaccine available.
On the CBS program “Face the Nation”, former FDA commissioner and Pfizer’s board member Dr. Scott Gottlieb said on Sunday that he believed it would be possible to develop a booster that “we are seeing tied in a lot of variations.”
“I think there’s a fair chance that we’re going to be able to stay ahead of this virus,” he said.