The Trump administration had planned to provide two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to people, however, the Biden administration will be altering this plan to provide only the first dose of the vaccine to as many people as possible, in the first phase.
President-elect Joe Biden’s team has explained that the reason for this change is that they want to vaccinate the majority of the population, considering the death toll and rate of coronavirus infections is at an all-time high. After this, the second dose will be administered in another phase.
A spokesman stated that Biden wants the vaccine to be administered immediately to people who are suffering.
As reported by the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention, only 28% of the vaccines have been administered which accounts for 5.9 million out of 29.4 million vaccines distributed. The provision of the vaccine has been slow.
According to the American Hospital Association, to reach the goal of herd immunity, 75% of the population must be vaccinated. To achieve this, 1.8 million people will need to be vaccinated per day for 5 months from January to May.
People waiting for the Moderna vaccine’s second dose should be provided with the dose after 28 days, meanwhile, to administer Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for a second dose requires 21 days.
According to an immunologist at Yale University, even though it is advised to follow the instructions given by the pharmaceutical companies. The second shot should be administered after 12 weeks, considering the current dire situation of coronavirus cases.
She proceeded to say that due to the emergence of a new variant of the virus – that originated from South Africa and Britain – the rate of spread of infection is increasing rapidly. It is important right now to vaccinate as many people as possible.
She explained that the purpose of the first shot is to prepare the immune system for the coronavirus – and the results are effective and encouraging – meanwhile, the second shot should be administered for protection against the virus in the long run.