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US government to ship 18.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine this week, White House says

US government to ship 18.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine this week, White House says

FILE PHOTO: Vials of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) are seen during a mass vaccination rollout in Ronda, Spain, on Feb 11, 2021. (Photo: REUTERS/Jon Nazca)

WASHINGTON: The White House said on Tuesday (Mar 9) that the government will distribute around 18.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines this week, fewer than last week because no new doses of Johnson & Johnson's vaccine are ready to be sent out.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said at a news briefing that the US government plans to distribute 15.8 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccine to states, tribes and territories, along with 2.7 million doses going to pharmacies.

Last week, the US government distributed over 21 million doses of all three vaccines. That included over 3.5 million doses of the newly authorised J&J vaccine.

J&J's manufacturing has been slower than expected, and the company was not expected to be able to deliver any doses of its vaccine this week. It is expected to resume shipments of the vaccine later in March.

As of Tuesday morning, more than 123 million doses of the vaccines had been distributed in the United States and 93.7 million shots had been administered, according to data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Source: Reuters

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