Delaware vaccination total hits 46,141 with no new shipments reported

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Delaware health care providers have administered 46,141 doses of Covid-19 vaccine as the total supply reported by the state remained at around 78,000 doses. No new doses have been received since Jan. 13.

Figures came from the Delaware Division of Public Health’s Vaccination Tracker.

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine dashboard shows Delaware receiving about 91,000 doses as of last weekend. About 5,300 people have received a second vaccine dose.

Delaware Division of Public Health officials noted that vaccinations and suppliers are higher than current figures suggest due to lag times in reporting and vaccines being shipped directly to providers and nursing. homes. To access the Delaware dashboard, click here.

Long-term care vaccinations are taking place under a separate federal program that uses pharmacists to inoculate residents.

Unhappiness over the pace of vaccinations

The latest figures are not expected to satisfy critics who claim the state is moving too slowly in Phase 1A vaccinations of health care workers and first responders.

CDC figures show New England states, Texas West Virginia, New Mexico and Montana leading the pack in the number of vaccinations per 100,000 population. Delaware appeared to be lagging a number of states, according to CDC figures, although the latest state vaccination push appears to have narrowed the gap.

States received disappointing news this week when it was learned that the federal government was not holding back second doses of vaccine, The Hill and other media outlets reported.

However, Reuters reported that Pfizer confirmed it had been holding back second doses while awaiting word from the federal government.

The uncertainties may mean Delaware will have more difficulty in moving toward Phase B. As noted above, only 5,000 second vaccinations have been administered in the state.

Phase 1B in Delaware includes large segments that include essential workers and those over the age of 65. Delaware’s over 65 population alone is estimated at 190,000 and would require upwards of 400,000 doses of Moderna or Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

Over the weekend, The Delaware Division of Public Health, Kent County EMS, Bayhealth, and the Delaware Medical Reserve Corps held three drive-through mass vaccination clinics at the Dover Division of Motor Vehicle (DMV) from Saturday through Monday, as part of a “sprint” to vaccinate remaining Phase 1A health care personnel in order to get to Phase 1B as quickly as possible.
The mass vaccinations are designed to tests the logistics and process for giving shots to 65 and older population once the state moves to Phase 1B, and as a way to use available vaccine doses.
On Saturday, DPH asked a small number of organizations with senior citizen members to come to these events. Word got around and others joined the line.
“We ask anyone not in those groups to please refrain from attempting to get vaccinated at the sites this weekend. Screening will be tightened for Sunday and Monday events and those not in those groups may be turned away. Vaccines remain in extremely short supply and are reserved for your friends and neighbors who need it the most,” DPH stated.

Moving to 1B

In addition to mass vaccinations through Department of Motor Vehicle locations, pharmacies are also expected to be a key part of the system.

The state is also seeking health care professionals to administer the vaccinations and deal with accompanying paperwork that will include reminding those vaccinated to get the required second dose.

A likely partner will be Curative, which has been working with the state on its Covid-19 testing program.

The latest figures show the Moderna vaccine in greater supply by a nearly two to one margin.

Location Pfizer Moderna Total Doses
Delaware Total 27,300 50,300 77,600
Delaware has sufficient cold storage capacity for 300,000 doses
The Moderna vaccine can be stored in a standard freezer, while the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine requires specialized equipment.

President-elect Joe Biden has vowed to increase the production of vaccines and speed up distribution with federal programs.

Under the Trump Administration, vaccine distribution has been handed over to states with governor’s complaining about receiving lower-than-expected vaccine dosages.

Promising development at J&J

One potentially promising development last week came with early indications that the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine has proven to be effective, based on data from early trials. Production problems have been reported with the vaccine, although company officials remain upbeat about meeting goals, the Fierce Pharma website reported.

Companies produce vaccines in advance of a final decision from the Food and Drug Administration.

It is possible, the vaccine will be available in March.

AstraZeneca also has a promising two-dose vaccine, with regulators awaiting results of trials. AZ has operations in Delaware.

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