White House boosting vaccine supply to states

White House press secretary Jen Psaki says the Biden administration is increasing coronavirus vaccine supplies sent to states to 13.5 million doses per week; that's a 57 percent increase from when Biden took office nearly a month ago. (Feb. 16)

Video Transcript

JEN PSAKI: Jeff Zients had a regular call with a number of governors, our COVID response coordinator of course, providing them with key updates on our pandemic response as well as hearing from them about the work they're doing on the ground. As a part of that call, he announced that we're increasing the vaccine supply to 13.5 million doses per week that will go out to states. This is a 57% increase from the amount states received when the president was inaugurated. So since then, obviously we have announced a couple of increases over the course of time.

We're also announcing that we're doubling the supply to our pharmacy program. When we announced that, we said it would be, it would be building over time. So today's announcement amounts to 2 million doses going to local pharmacies this week. And this program will expand access in neighborhoods across the country so that people can call and make an appointment and get their shot conveniently and quickly. Eventually, as supply increases, more than 40,000 pharmacy locations nationwide will be providing COVID-19 vaccines through this program. This is a critical, critical part of our plan.

- Is there any discussion of this winter weather affecting the vaccine distribution? What steps is the federal government taking to ensure that there's no spoilage of those vaccines?

JEN PSAKI: You're right that we monitor obviously weather. Mother nature and the weather can sometimes impact and requires contingency planning, which is something our team is quite focused on. Our COVID-19 response team is also in close touch with state and local governments across the country. We're monitoring the situation in Texas very closely.

Obviously FEMA is running point on a number of the operational pieces. But while I don't have an update now, it's something we're very mindful of. And we have a contingency plan to ensure people are getting the doses they need at an appropriate timely.