The plan breaks with the longstanding precedent that CDC distributes vaccines during major outbreaks through a centralized ordering system.
Nationwide distribution of any coronavirus vaccine will be a “joint venture” between the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which typically oversees vaccine allocation, and the Department of Defense, a senior administration official said today.
The Department of Defense “is handling all the logistics of getting the vaccines to the right place, at the right time, in the right condition,” the official said in a call with reporters, adding that CDC will remain in charge of tracking any side effects that emerge post-vaccination and “some of the communications through the state relationships [and] the state public health organizations.”
The plan breaks with the longstanding precedent that CDC distributes vaccines during major outbreaks — such as bad flu seasons — through a centralized ordering system for state and local health officials.
“We believe we’ve actually combined the best of both,” the official said. A second senior administration official stressed the agencies would be working as “one team” to distribute hundreds of millions of doses if any of the vaccines in development are approved in the coming months.