The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), in partnership with the US Department of Defense (DOD), announced an agreement to purchase 66 million doses of bivalent COVID-19 vaccine booster candidates by Moderna for potential use in winter and fall.
This announcement of a contract follows a recommendation by the US FDA that vaccine producers update their existing COVID-19 vaccines to create a bivalent booster, which can target BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron COVID-19 variants.
This acquisition is in addition to the 105 million bilvalent COVID-19 vaccine booster doses the government of the United States purchased recently from Pfizer for use later in 2022, and the pending US FDA approval, and a recommendation by the US CDC. The HHS will receive the first deliveries of the vaccine booster doses of Pfizer and Moderna in early fall.
Xavier Becerra, HHS secretary, said they must stay vigilant in their fight against COVID-19, and they will continue to expand access of the people in the US to the best vaccines and treatments. He also said that as they look to winter and fall, they are just doing that, ensuring the people of the United States have the tools they need to stay safe, and provide help in keeping the United States moving forward.
Dawn O’Connell, HHS assistant secretary, said they look forward to receive these new variant-specific COVID-19 vaccines, and working with state and local healthcare partners to make the COVID-19 vaccines available for free in communities across the United States.
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