Frontline essential workers and people 75 and over should follow frontline healthcare workers and long-term care residents in getting the coronavirus vaccines, a CDC advisory panel said Sunday. That means grocery store workers, meat industry workers, teachers, public transit workers, and many more.
There are about 30 million essential workers in this group, and 19 million people 75 and older who would be eligible, with vaccinations expected to start early in 2021. They would be followed by a much larger group—129 million people—including another set of essential workers, adults 65 to 74 years of age, and younger adults with medical conditions that put them at higher risk.
The question is when there will be enough doses of vaccines for all these people. The Moderna vaccine has now gotten emergency authorization and is being shipped out, but supply of both that and the Pfizer vaccine will take time to catch up with the need. “Federal health officials have estimated that there could be enough vaccine supply to inoculate 100 million people before the end of February, including the nation’s 21 million health care workers and three million residents of long-term care facilities,” The New York Times reports.