Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the new director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), says she doubts that a Covid-19 vaccine will be available in every pharmacy in the United States by late February.
Walensky was responding to predictions from former Health and Human Services Secretary, Alex Azar, who said that there could be widespread availability of the vaccine for the general population in pharmacies that month.
Speaking to NBC’s Savannah Guthrie on the Today Show Thursday, Walensky said:
"As I said early on, I’m going to tell you the truth here, I don’t think late February we’re going to have vaccine in every pharmacy in this country.
"We said 100 million doses in the first 100 days and we’re going to stick to that plan, but I also want to be very cognizant of the fact that after 100 days there are still a lot of Americans who need [a] vaccine.”
The CDC head added that the US is hoping to have more data from the Johnson and Johnson vaccine candidate soon, and the more vaccines are granted FDA authorization, “the better shape we’ll be [in].”
The US continues to be the worst-hit country by Covid-19 globally, with more than 24.4 million cases recorded since the start of the pandemic, according to Johns Hopkins University.