Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, President Biden’s chief medical adviser for Covid-19, said Thursday that most members of the general public could become eligible to get the coronavirus vaccine as soon as April.
“As we get into March and April, the number of available doses will allow for much more of a mass vaccination approach,” he said in an interview with the “Today” co-host Savannah Guthrie.
States have so far been prioritizing vaccines for older people and health care and essential workers, as well as residents of long-term care facilities. Dr. Fauci has said in the past that vaccine availability was likely to increase significantly through the spring.
“I would imagine by the time we get to April, that will be what I would call, for better wording, ‘open season,’” he said on Thursday. “Namely, virtually everybody and anybody in any category could start to get vaccinated.”
It would take “several more months” after that to get the vaccines into most people’s arms, he said, adding that he hoped the overwhelming majority of people in the United States could be vaccinated by mid- to late summer.
Although vaccine distribution in the United States has so far been plagued by confusion, difficulties and delays, the average number of shots administered daily has been increasing steadily since late December. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 1.56 million doses were given on Wednesday, bringing the latest seven-day average to more than 1.5 million a day.
The supply of vaccines is also growing, though it is still well below demand. Moderna and Pfizer, whose vaccines have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, have been gradually increasing production. The F.D.A. could authorize a one-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson later this month, and other vaccines from Novavax and AstraZeneca could also be authorized for U.S. use in the spring.