Experts say 20 million people in the US could be vaccinated by end of 2020

Monday, November 23, 2020
Top Houston doctor warns thousands could die waiting for COVID-19 vaccines
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Dr. Peter Hotez predicts at the current rate, another 150,000 American lives will be lost to COVID-19 before February.

The White House vaccine chief revealed the first Americans could be vaccinated as early as Dec. 11.

"My expectation is that this vaccine will be as safe as all the other vaccines that are being used in the population," said Chief Scientific Advisor of Operation Warp Speed Dr. Moncef Slaoui.

Slaoui said the FDA vaccine advisory committee is scheduled to meet Dec. 10.

SEE ALSO: What to know about COVID-19 vaccines and how they work

If the committee issues an emergency use authorization for Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine, it could be rolled out the next day.

"Our plan is to be able to ship vaccines to the immunization sites within 24 hours from the approval. So, I expect, maybe on day two after approval, on the 11th or the 12th of December," Slaoui said.

Around 20 million people in the U.S. could be vaccinated by the end of 2020.

Experts say healthcare workers, the elderly and people with underlying medical conditions will get the vaccine first.

SEE ALSO: Top Houston doctor warns thousands could die waiting for COVID-19 vaccines

On Saturday, U.S. coronavirus cases surpassed 12 million-- an increase of more than one million cases in less than a week according to Johns Hopkins University data.

And health experts fear an even bigger surge following the Thanksgiving holiday.

"If even 1% of the 50 million people who are traveling for Thanksgiving transmit or get this virus, we're looking at an extra 500,000 cases across the country. This is the year to stay home," said Dr. Megan Ranney.

The video above is from previous story.