Tennessee is preparing a COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan that could be ready for use within the next few months.
This week, officials the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told governors they hope to have a vaccine as soon as November. But details are still unclear. Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey told reporters Thursday she expects it to be a phased roll-out.
“A lot of that is still being worked out. But we have been notified that we may get a few hundred thousand doses,” Piercey said. “That’s not an exact number,and we don’t have an exact timeframe, but it will not be millions and millions of doses in November and December.”
Piercey said health care workers and first responders would be the first ones to get the vaccine, similar to how other vaccines are prioritized.
“Everyone’s personal decision when it comes to vaccines should be a full assessment of their beliefs of safety and efficacy of that, and we are going to help provide counsel on that,” Piercey said. “But that is a personal decision that people and their doctors need to make for themselves.”
According to The New York Times, two vaccines in the U.S. are in phase three trial. This is when scientists give doses to thousands of people to determine if the vaccine protects against coronavirus.
That’s a step before a limited or full approval.
Still, based on the CDC’s guidelines, some of these vaccines could be distributed even before they get out of the phase three.