Philadelphia hospitals receive first doses of Pfizer vaccine Monday

Some Philadelphia hospitals have received their first doses of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine, just days after it was approved for emergency use.

Shipments of precious frozen vials of vaccine made by Pfizer Inc. and its German partner BioNTech began arriving at hospitals around the country Monday.

Dr. Michelle Chester holds a vial of the Covid-19 vaccine at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, on December 14, 2020 in the Queens borough of New York. (Photo by Mark Lennihan / POOL / AFP) (Photo by MARK LENNIHAN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Doctors at Philadelphia's Einstein Medical Center have confirmed the first doses of the vaccine arrived there late Monday morning.

“I tell the team working on this we have an opportunity to save the world. I think the vaccine gives us an opportunity to get back to a normal life in the United States,” Doctor Steven Sivak explained.

Last week, Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley stated the vaccine could be available in the city as early as this week pending the approval it received over the weekend. He added that a second vaccine, produced by Moderna, could be approved later this week.

If approved, the Moderna vaccine could be available in Philadelphia the following week.

City officials say the number of vaccines available would be limited and the priority group who would receive it would be healthcare workers who are routinely exposed to COVID-19.

As for distribution, Dr. Farley says hospitals and nursing homes could be tasked with vaccinated their own staff once provided with doses.

“We’ve seen COVID-19 impact our communities very negatively and I’m confident that the new vaccine has a much, much lower risk then the risk of getting COVID and the complications of COVID,” Dr. Sivak added.

Across the river in New Jersey, Governor Phil Murphy says he expects 76,000 doses in the first batch received. At Jefferson Hospital in Washington township, its first shipment is expected next week.

 The first dose of the vaccine was administered on Monday morning to a critical care nurse in New York. 



First US COVID-19 vaccinations given as shipments arrive nationwide

If approved, doses of Pfizer vaccine could be available in Philadelphia next week, officials say


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