- Moderna announced on Tuesday that many of its 1,200 employees, contractors, and board members could be prioritized for its vaccine.
- The company clarified that those doses would not interfere with the national stockpile.
- Moderna also stated that the internal vaccination of staff and board members they are deeming "essential workers" would be paid for by Moderna.
- Pfizer signaled it would not prioritize higher-ups but "plans to vaccinate employees as groups of them become eligible per CDC guidelines."
- An NBC News analysis on Tuesday claimed that Operation Warp Speed would take almost a decade to inoculate enough Americans to control the pandemic.
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Moderna — the pharmaceutical company which produced one of the two COVID-19 vaccines with emergency authorization from the Food and Drug Administration — said on Tuesday that it would offer its COVID-19 vaccine to employees, contractors, and board members. In a news release, the company said that the move, which could be at odds with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's priority groups, was "to provide an additional layer of COVID-19 protection."
"Moderna is making its vaccine available to its workers, contractors, and board members in the US under Emergency Use Authorization. The program will extend to adult household members of our team to reduce the risk of absenteeism and disruption due to a COVID-19 infection in an adult household member," the statement said, including that participation would be confidential and voluntary.
Moderna also stated that the internal vaccination of staff and board members they are deeming "essential workers" would be paid for by Moderna and would not dip into the vaccine stock to be used by the US government.
The company has close to 1200 employees and has previously said that in December it is expecting to provide the government with 20 million doses, aiming to provide 200 million doses by mid-2021.
The CDC's priority groups include Americans over 75 and in nursing homes, frontline healthcare workers, and another grouping of essential workers including teachers, factory workers, first responders, US Postal Service employees, and grocery store workers.
Moderna did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
On Tuesday, vaccine producer Pfizer issued a contrasting statement, saying the company "plans to vaccinate employees as groups of them become eligible per CDC guidelines." Pfizer employs around 88,000 workers globally and developed the vaccine with partner BioNTech.
"The first group is the company's essential workers, especially in manufacturing," the statement said. "There are no plans to prioritize the vaccination of our executives or board members ahead of other high-risk groups."
Although 2 million vaccine doses have been administered in the US, an NBC News analysis on Tuesday shared that Operation Warp Speed is crawling at a snail's pace, and it would take almost a decade to inoculate enough Americans to tame the pandemic.
President-elect Joe Biden, who last week received the first dose of the two-shot Pfizer vaccine, reiterated this week that the Trump administration is falling "far behind" on vaccinations.
On Twitter, Vice President Mike Pence shot back saying "Operation Warp Speed is on track to distribute 20 Million doses of Coronavirus Vaccine by next week," mentioning that "millions" of vaccines have been administered.
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