Officials believe more than 20M people could get first COVID-19 vaccine dose by end of year

FDA authorization details remain unclear

WASHINGTONModerna announced that it’s candidate for a COVID-19 vaccine is nearly 95 percent effective. Many are still wondering how long it will take for a vaccine to reach the public.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are convening a panel to determine where the vaccines will go first. Most Americans won’t get it for months.

READ: What does COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness mean?

As of Tuesday, two vaccines are ahead of schedule and more effective than scientists ever thought they would be. Moderna and Pfizer could roll out 70 million doses worldwide in the coming weeks.

Both vaccines require two doses. Officials in the United States said a little more than 20 million people could get their first shot before the end of the year.

READ: CVS Pharmacy to offer COVID vaccine when available

Both vaccines need Food and Drug Administration authorization, but details and dates on that remain unclear. Moderna’s vaccine was not tested on children. Questions also remain over vaccinating pregnant women and infants.

A poll conducted after the Pfizer announcement, but before the news from Moderna, found 60 percent of Americans are likely to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

The U.S. government hopes to provide the vaccine free of charge.

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