Pfizer will distribute at least 70 million doses by June 30, according to a news release, and the remainder will not be delivered until July 31.
With this agreement, the federal government would have purchased 200 million doses of Pfizer / BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine for $ 4 billion. The vaccine is 95% effective against coronovirus after two doses a few weeks apart.
HHS said the agreement included an additional 400 million doses of the vaccine. Pfizer said the US government would pay $ 1.95 billion for an additional 100 million doses.
Last week, HHS Secretary Alex Azar said negotiations to buy more coronavirus vaccines were complicated by Pfizer supply chain issues that would make it more challenging for the company to produce 100 million more vaccine doses in the spring. Pfizer was seeking help from OWS to secure vital material so that vaccines could be made available in a timely manner.
On Wednesday, a spokesperson for HHS told CNN in a statement that the Trump administration is using its officials under the Defense Production Act to “prioritize the materials and supplies needed to expand vaccine production.”
The statement said Operation Vape Speed is using “selective applications from DPA officials” to facilitate the production of six vaccines, including the Pfizer vaccine.
The Pfizer / BioNTech coronavirus vaccine was the first to receive emergency use authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration. Thousands of thousands of doses of the vaccine have been given since last week.
The Trump administration faced criticism after reports by the New York Times that the US government failed to secure an additional 100 million doses when Pfizer offered that option over the summer. The administration has denied reports that it turned down Pfizer’s proposal.