The United States has a backlog of six million COVID-19 vaccine doses due to winter storms and power outages weather, White House officials said at a media briefing on Friday, adding that the federal government expects to catch up with vaccine distribution by next week.
All 50 states are impacted, said Andy Slavitt, senior adviser to the White House COVID-19 response team. He said delays were due to road closures, shipping company employees unable to get to work, and power outages in certain locations.
States should prepare to handle previously expected doses as well as the backlogged shots, Slavitt said. The United States has been ramping up shipments of vaccines.
Slavitt said the packaging plant that is working on Moderna‘s vaccine is “just now” coming online after roads were cleared. It intends to have vaccines on planes by Sunday night for delivery next week, he added.
Earlier this week, Moderna said there may be some short-term delays in vaccine deliveries but that it expected the issue to be resolved soon.
In San Diego, the UC San Diego Health vaccination super station at Petco Park will be shut on Friday and Saturday because of the shortage. Other local vaccination sites are prioritizing second doses.
The U.S. is ramping up shipments of vaccines and U.S. infectious disease response leader Anthony Fauci said that a trial of Pfizer Inc’s vaccine on children younger than 12 would start in April, with results a year later.
Updated at 10:55 a.m., Friday, Feb. 19, 2021