On Dec. 17, Governor Kate Brown announced that 15,600 of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines expected in Oregon will not arrive as planned.
“Like Washington and other states, Oregon was informed by [the CDC] that our Pfizer vaccine allocation for next week has been cut by 40%,” Brown wrote on Twitter. “This was a federal decision, and I am seeking answers from the CDC about the reliability of the data we are receiving from week to week as Oregon builds our vaccine distribution plan. We need accurate information to make sure Oregonians are receiving COVID-19 vaccinations as quickly as possible.”
The Trump administration attributed the drastic reduction of quantity of the shipment to Pfizer production problems. According to The Washington Post, a senior administration official explained that the reduced number of vaccine doses is linked to their earlier shipment as the company produces the vaccines daily.
However, Pfizer issued a statement on Dec. 17 saying: “Pfizer is not having any production issues with our COVID-19 vaccine, and no shipments containing the vaccine are on hold or delayed. This week, we successfully shipped all 2.9 million doses that we were asked to ship by the U.S. Government to the locations specified by them. We have millions more doses sitting in our warehouse but, as of now, we have not received any shipment instructions for additional doses.”
Pfizer further said that they share weekly their production and distribution capacities with the “Operation Warp Speed” and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Both Pfizer and BioNTech said that this vaccine has not been approved or licensed by the US. Food and Drug Administration. It’s been solely authorized for emergency usage to prevent Covid-19 for individuals 16 years of age and older for as long as the pandemic continues.
By Joanna Rosińska