State officials say a COVID-19 vaccine could be available in Delaware as early as next month.
The pharmaceutical companies Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZenica are each moving closer to releasing a COVID vaccine on the market. Both Pfizer’s and Moderna are reported to show more than 90 percent effectiveness with minimal side effects.
A federal Food and Drug Administration committee is scheduled to meet December 10th to discuss those two vaccines.
Delaware Public Health Director Dr. Karyl Rattay says if either is approved that day, it could arrive in Delaware between Dec. 11 and 14.
She says a CDC committee and a state ethics group each agree the priority population to get the vaccine will be frontline health care workers providing care for COVID patients. That includes doctors and nurses as well as long-term care facility workers and first responders.
“Not just doctors and nurses, but other individuals who work in a health care setting and are in contact with COVID patients or possible COVID patients are in front of the line for getting the vaccine—those who are first responders, especially EMS,” said Rattay.
But Rattay cautions the supply will likely be limited. She says she expects only seven to eight thousand doses for the initial weekly allocation of each vaccine to start.
“We don’t know this for sure, but the point there is it’s going to be a small amount to start with,” said Rattay.
The coronavirus continues to spread at an accelerated pace in Delaware with an average of more than 454 new positive cases per day.