NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The first shipment of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is expected to arrive in Tennessee next week, according to the Tennessee Department of Health.
Thursday, TDH announced the vaccine is expected to be shipped to all 95 Tennessee county health departments and small hospitals that did not receive Pfizer vaccine on or around December 21.
115,000 doses are expected in the initial shipment over the next two weeks following Emergency Use Authorization issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and recommendations released by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.
Smaller hospitals that are not receiving the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine are expected to receive the Moderna vaccine the week of Dec. 28.
The FDA announced Wednesday that vials of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, which are labeled as containing five doses, may include enough of the vaccine to provide six or possibly seven doses. FDA has announced these additional doses may be used, meaning Tennessee may have as many as 11,000 more doses of this vaccine to provide than originally expected.
“We are excited to receive these additional vaccines and see our COVID-19 vaccination activities underway,” said Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP. “Tennessee county health department staff members will administer the Moderna vaccine to first responders, home health care providers and student health care providers in partnership with these organizations and their local community emergency management agencies.”
The first doses of the Moderna vaccine will go to frontline hospital health care workers, first responders, long-term care facility residents and staff, home health providers, student health providers; those who qualify for Phase 1a1, as detailed in the COVID-19 Vaccination Plan for Tennessee..
As with the Pfizer vaccine, initial supplies of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine are limited.
Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines are not interchangeable; each patient must receive two doses of the same vaccine to be protected against COVID-19.