Fauci asks Americans to prepare to get vaccinated as states plan for distribution

December 3, 2020

As the U.S. prepares for the first round of vaccinations to tackle COVID-19, infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci called on the public to “be part of the solution” and get vaccinated once it is available.

“Say, ‘I’m not going to be one of the people that’s going to be a steppingstone for the virus to go to somebody else. I’m going to be a dead end to the virus,'” Fauci told Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Monday, November 30, 2020.

The virus has been spreading quickly, and November set records 20 times for the number of coronavirus hospitalizations, according to the COVID Tracking Project, the most recent Monday with 96,039. All the while Johns Hopkins University data reports that the U.S. has reached more than 13.5 million total cases and 268,045 deaths. And the impacts of Thanksgiving travel still won’t be felt for weeks, health experts say.

Holiday gatherings — like Thanksgiving and upcoming Christmas and Hanukkah — are the “perfect setup” for people who have no symptoms to “innocently and inadvertently” spread infections to their loved ones.

With that in mind, officials are preparing for the first wave of vaccine distributions.

Vaccine candidates from Pfizer and Moderna are both awaiting emergency use authorizations. States have until Friday to request the number of doses for Pfizer’s vaccine, Executive Director of the Association of Immunization Managers Claire Hannan told CNN Monday, November 30, 2020.