The US needs to be doing a better job with its Covid-19 vaccine rollout, Assistant Secretary for Health Admiral Brett Giroir said Wednesday.
“Of course, we need to be doing a better job, but all vaccine programs start somewhat slow,” Giroir told CNN’s Jake Tapper.
He said he expects distribution to ramp up soon and that the US is on track to distribute 20 million vaccine doses by the first week of January.
“I know we will be distributing about 30 million more in January and potentially up to 50 million more in February,” he said.
As pharmacies begin to play a larger role in vaccine administration, Giroir said he expects the pace to quicken.
“We have a federal contract with 40,000 pharmacies – that’s 60% of all pharmacies in the US – to provide vaccines,” said Giroir. “The scale will go up very rapidly as things progress and evolve.”
“Vaccines on the shelf are no good,” he added. “They need to get in people’s arms and we are leaving no stone unturned to do that.”
Some background: Operation Warp Speed is on track to fall well short of the 20 million vaccine shots they predicted would be administered by the end of December.
Nearly 2.6 million vaccine doses have been administered in the United States, according to data given to CNN by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.