COVID-19 vaccine by Nov. 1? Houston's working on it

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- While the CDC says to prepare for a COVID-19 vaccine by Nov. 1, there's concern among other health experts who say that date may be unlikely because there's still so much testing to be conducted.

In a letter to governors dated Aug. 27, Robert Redfield, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said states "in the near future" will receive permit applications from McKesson Corp., which has contracted with CDC to distribute vaccines to places including state and local health departments and hospitals.

Regardless of the debate over the Nov. 1 date, Houston health care looks to be at the center of the testing race.

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Moderna said it was looking to enroll 30,000 people for phase three of its trial by the end of September.

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Volunteers are given a placebo or a vaccine, but they won't be made aware of which one they were given until the end of the study. Officials said along the way, they will still be able to gather data from the participants and determine if the vaccine is working.

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The idea is to have a large pool of participants because officials can gather data quicker that way.

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