The Biden administration will begin providing COVID-19 vaccines to U.S. pharmacies, part of its plan to ramp up vaccinations as new and potentially more serious virus strains are starting to appear. (Feb. 2)
JEFF ZIENTS: Starting on February 11th, the federal government will deliver vaccines directly to select pharmacies across the country. This will provide more sites for people to get vaccinated in their communities and it's an important component to delivering vaccines equitably. This pharmacy program will expand access in neighborhoods across the country, so you can make an appointment and get your shot conveniently and quickly.
Eventually, as we're able to increase supply, up to 40,000 pharmacies nationwide could provide COVID-19 vaccinations. These are places ranging from local independent pharmacies, to national pharmacies and supermarkets. This is a critical step to provide the public with convenient, trusted places to get vaccinated in their communities.
Last week we took steps to increase the amount of vaccine going to states, tribes and territories by 16%. Today, we are further increasing that weekly allocation by an additional 5%. So for the next three weeks, we will provide a minimum of 10.5 million in total doses per week across all jurisdictions. That means we have increased supply by more than 20% since we took office.
As the President has said, this is a national emergency and we are treating it as such. We're bringing the full force of the federal government to partner with state and local leaders in this effort. We are giving Americans the facts they need and we're working to ensure our response is fair and equitable.
We are doing all we can, but it is critical that Congress does its part as well. We need Congress to quickly pass the American Rescue Plan and give us the funding we need to continue to scale up our vaccination program and to provide the resources that state and local leaders need to protect their communities and fight the pandemic.