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Who is making the potential COVID-19 vaccine? When will it get to Texas? Answering 6 distribution questions

With a limited amount of shots available if the FDA approves a COVID-19 vaccine, there will be an order for who can get a shot first. And where people can get it.

A COVID-19 vaccine could be available by the end of December for people in the United States.

Multiple companies have applied for authorization of their COVID-19 vaccines from the Food and Drug Administration.

With a limited amount of shots available, if the FDA approves these vaccines, there will be an order for who can get a shot first.

What companies are currently working on a vaccine?

The companies Pfizer and BioNTech created the first possible vaccine that the companies say is 95% effective.

Moderna is right behind them, with a vaccine it says is 94% effective.

These companies have applied for authorization from the Food and Drug Administration, which has a panel of experts reviewing the two vaccines.

Pfizer will be reviewed on Dec. 10. Moderna will be reviewed on Dec. 17.

How will the vaccine be distributed?

COVID-19 vaccine shots will be available from health care providers and at pharmacy chains. Both vaccinations require two doses.

The vaccine would be distributed under the FDA's “emergency use authorization."

Both national and state health officials say this public-private approach to vaccinations came from lessons learned during the H1-N1 pandemic in 2009.

If your company or business wants to be a COVID-19 vaccination provider, you can sign up here.

When will the COVID-19 vaccine be available?

National health officials say the first vaccinations in the United States are expected to take place toward the latter part of December.

Who will get the vaccine first?

If the proposed vaccines are approved by the FDA panel, then a national advisory committee will make its final recommendation for who should get the shots first.

Distribution recommendations show health care workers should be among the first people to get the vaccine.

Texas has appointed a team of health leaders to form a COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Panel to figure out distribution details for our state, specifically.

Gov. Greg Abbott says COVID-19 vaccines will be distributed based on the following criteria:

  • Protecting health care workers who fill a critical role in caring for and preserving the lives of COVID-19 patients and maintaining the health care infrastructure for all who need it.
  • Protecting frontline workers who are at greater risk of contracting COVID-19 due to the nature of their work providing critical services and preserving the economy.
  • Protecting vulnerable populations who are at greater risk of severe disease and death if they contract COVID-19.
  • Mitigating health inequities due to factors such as demographics, poverty, insurance status and geography.
  • Data-driven allocations using the best available scientific evidence and epidemiology at the time, allowing for flexibility for local conditions.
  • Geographic diversity through a balanced approach that considers access in urban and rural communities and in affected ZIP codes.
  • Transparency through sharing allocations with the public and seeking public feedback.

How many Texas locations will be providing COVID-19 vaccine shots?

There will be at least 6,300 Texas locations prepared to give COVID-19 vaccine shots in December.

Will the vaccine be free?

Yes. The vaccine will be both voluntary and free because funding for the vaccine comes from the federal government.

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