Multiple Covid-19 vaccines have seen success in stage three clinical trials. Pfizer Company has a meeting with the FDA seeking emergency approval scheduled for December 10th.
Should the Pfizer vaccine be approved, distribution of the vaccine to states and localities would promptly begin.
Dr. Lisa Piercy, the commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Health, says she expects the state to receive between 80,000 and 100,000 doses of the vaccine by December 15th. Piercy noted that this number and date is subject to change, but as of November 24, the expectation is for the state to receive that number of doses on the 15th.
Piercy also explained that people will need two doses of the vaccine in order to be immunized against Covid-19 therefore 100,000 doses could immunize 50,000 people.
The state has laid out multiple phases of a vaccination plan which outlines who will receive the vaccine in each phase. The phases are as follows:
Phase 1: Frontline Healthcare workers, first responders, outpatient healthcare workers, older adults in group care facilities, and high risk individuals.
Phase 2: School and child care staff, adults in group care facilities, all older adults, those in critical infrastructure jobs, and moderate risk individuals.
Phase 3: Young adults, children, industry workers.
Phase 4: All Others.
Piercy says she believes vaccines should be readily available to all Tennesseans by late spring or early summer of 2021.
Knox County is expected to receive 975 doses of the vaccine in December’s first batch of doses. Charity Menefee of the Knox County Health department said that distribution of those vaccines will move quickly once the county receives them.