In a recent White House briefing, President Joe Biden said he expects the United States will have enough COVID-19 vaccines for all adults by the end of May 2021. Previously, the Biden administration’s goal had been to have enough doses of the vaccine to distribute to all adults in the United States by the end of July 2021.
To meet distribution goals, Biden warned that it’s not enough to just have a sufficient number of vaccines, as the country faces challenges related to having enough personnel and vaccination sites to administer the vaccines. Biden also said that the administration will prioritize the vaccination of educators in the month of March as students return to classrooms.
This statement comes days after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine. With this EUA, there are three vaccines authorized for widespread use in the United States.
“Though we celebrate the news of the third vaccine, I urge all Americans [to] please keep washing your hands, stay socially distanced [and] wear masks,” Biden said. “Keep wearing them, get vaccinated when it’s your turn. Now is not the time to let up.”
What This Means
Although vaccine distribution has increased, Biden’s statement does not mean that vaccines will be immediately available to the general public. Employers should continue to monitor updates from local officials for vaccine availability.