Pharmacy chains CVS and Walgreens announced on Monday that they have started administering coronavirus vaccines to those living and working in assisted living facilities.
The announcement comes on the same day Modern’s coronavirus vaccine began being administered throughout the US. Moderna’s vaccine was the second to receive an emergency use authorization from the FDA. Last week, Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine began being administered nationwide.
"Today's rollout is the culmination of months of internal planning and demonstrates how the private sector can use its expertise to help solve some of our most critical challenges," said Larry J. Merlo, President and Chief Executive Officer, CVS Health. "I'm grateful for the herculean efforts of everyone involved, including our health care professionals who will be deployed throughout the country to bring peace of mind to long-term care facility residents, staff, and their loved ones."
Pharmacy chain Walgreens said last week that it will be working with 35,000 assisted care facilities throughout the US in the coming weeks and months in administering the coronavirus vaccine. Last week, CVS announced plans to vaccinate those working or living in 40,000 assisted living facilities.
Walgreens expects to vaccinate 3 million residents and staff at facilities throughout the US. CVS did not announced how many people they expect to vaccinate through the program.
Walgreens said it will be administering coronavirus vaccines to residents and staff at 800 facilities spread across 12 US states this week.
CVS and Walgreens are expected at some point to administer the coronavirus vaccine to the general public, but when is still a major question. Currently, a limited number of vaccines are making their way to health care workers and those living and working in assisted living facilities.
President-elect Joe Biden said his administration’s goal is to have 100 million Americans vaccinated by the end of April, but that figure represents less than one third of the US population.
“Walgreens is very proud to be a part of this historic milestone to begin administering Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to our most vulnerable populations,” said John Standley, president, Walgreens. “With more than a decade of experience administering various vaccines, we have the deep expertise to support this unprecedented effort to allow our nation to emerge from this pandemic.”