Nearly 225,000 doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine could arrive in Texas as soon as the week of Dec. 14, the state health department says.
According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, 224,250 doses of the vaccine will be shipped within weeks to 109 hospitals in 34 counties across the state.
While the supply is limited, DSHS noted that it would be the first of "many vaccine allocations to come." The number of vaccines going to each county was based on the number of health care workers who could be vaccinated quickly and the storage capacity of each location.
In trials, the Pfizer vaccine was found to be 95% effective in preventing COVID-19 and, in addition, appeared to fend off severe disease.
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The first shipments are expected to be part of the 1.4 million doses Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) said are headed to the state.
Texas will initially allocate COVID-19 vaccines based on the following criteria:
- Protecting health care workers who fill a critical role in caring for and preserving the lives of COVID-19 patients and maintaining the health care infrastructure for all who need it.
- Protecting frontline workers who are at greater risk of contracting COVID-19 due to the nature of their work providing critical services and preserving the economy.
- Protecting vulnerable populations who are at greater risk of severe disease and death if they contract COVID-19.
- Mitigating health inequities due to factors such as demographics, poverty, insurance status and geography.
- Data-driven allocations using the best available scientific evidence and epidemiology at the time, allowing for flexibility for local conditions.
- Geographic diversity through a balanced approach that considers access in urban and rural communities and in affected ZIP codes.
- Transparency through sharing allocations with the public and seeking public feedback.