ADPH says 4,489 Alabamians have gotten first vaccination dose; Second shipment of Pfizer vaccine reduced
More than 4,000 health care workers in Alabama received the first dose of a coronavirus vaccine this week, though next week’s shipment of more Pfizer vaccine doses was reduced by nearly half.
A total of 4,489 from line health care workers have received a dose of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine — a treatment that requires two shots given three weeks apart.
The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) revealed the numbers in a release on Friday afternoon. Providers must report each vaccine injection to ADPH within 24 hours.
Disappointingly, ADPH also made public that the federal government has reduced the number of Pfizer shots Alabama can expect to receive next week from 48,750 to 29,250.
According to past comments from State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris, the second shipment of Pfizer vaccine to Alabama was set to be the first set of doses given to Alabama’s nursing home residents.
The initial allotment given out over the last week has gone to health care workers on the front lines of combating the virus.
ADPH assured the public that the reduced shipment next week will not prevent those that have received their first dose from receiving their second — as the second doses have already been allocated.
Vice President Mike Pence received a dose of the vaccine Friday morning and said he “didn’t feel a thing” during the injection process.
Vice President Mike Pence received the Pfizer vaccine for Covid-19 this morning.
"I didn't feel a thing," he said after. pic.twitter.com/ZMgIELb5cp
— POLITICO (@politico) December 18, 2020
Dr. Jeanne Marrazzo, the director of UAB Hospitals Division of Infectious Diseases and whose knowledge is often cited in media reports, revealed that she received her first vaccine dose on Friday and praised UAB’s operation as running with “military precision.”
FOMO b gone! @uabmedicine running #SARS_CoV_2 #vaccination w/ military precision, cheer & kindness when some (moi) got emotional at historic moment. SO grateful to all who made this achievement reality esp #clinicaltrial participants @pfizer @NIH @kathleen_neuzil @UAB_ID @UABNews pic.twitter.com/pBk93Etyg5
— Jeanne Marrazzo (@DrJeanneM) December 18, 2020
A second vaccine, from the company Moderna, is expected to receive final approval from federal regulators at any moment.
“ADPH expects some hospitals in Alabama to begin receiving Moderna COVID-19 vaccine next week,” the organization said Friday.
“The expected total allocation of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine planned for Alabama is 83,400 doses,” ADPH added.
Moderna’s vaccine, like Pfizer’s, is given in two injections a few weeks apart.
However, Moderna’s can be kept in freezers available at almost any health care provider, while Pfizer’s required such cold temperatures that only large, well-resourced facilities had the capability to store it.
Health experts urge members of the public to continue social distancing, wearing masks and washing their hands during the upcoming months as they say vaccines will likely not be available to the general public until the spring or early summer.