Pfizer will deliver at least 70 million doses by June 30, and the rest will be delivered by July 31, according to a press release.
With this agreement, the federal government will have purchased 200 million doses of Pfizer / BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine for $ 4 billion. The vaccine is 95% effective against coronavirus after two doses given every few weeks.
The deal includes an option for an additional 400 million doses of the vaccine, HHS said. Pfizer said the U.S. government will pay $ 1.95 billion for the additional 100 million doses.
Last week, HHS secretary Alex Azar said negotiations to buy more coronavirus vaccine were complicated by Pfizer’s supply chain problems, which will make it more challenging for the company to produce 100 million more vaccine doses in the spring. Pfizer had sought help from OWS to secure key materials to deliver the vaccine on a fast timeline.
On Wednesday, an HHS spokesman told CNN in a statement that the Trump administration is using its authorities under the Defense Production Act to “prioritize access to the critical materials and supplies needed to expand vaccine production.”
The statement says that Operation Warp Speed uses “selective use of DPA authorities” to facilitate the production of the six vaccines it supports, including the Pfizer vaccine.
The Pfizer / BioNTech coronavirus vaccine was the first to receive emergency use approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Hundreds of thousands of doses of the vaccine have been administered since last week.
The Trump administration came under fire after the New York Times reported that the U.S. government had not secured another 100 million doses when Pfizer offered this option over the summer. The administration has denied reports that it rejected this offer from Pfizer.