Minnesota can expect phase one of vaccine distributions as early as next week

Even with a vaccine in site, the governor insists precautionary measures still must be taken.

MINNESOTA – Governor Tim Walz discusses Minnesota’s plan for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccinations in the state.

“Exactly how long we’re going to need to be keeping six feet apart and avoiding close crowds and wearing masks – we don’t know any of that yet,” says  Minnesota Health Department Commissioner Jan Malcolm.

What we know is the state of Minnesota will receive more than 183-thousand doses of the COVID-19 vaccine by the end of the month.

“Vaccines will be shipped directly to key hospitals or hubs across the state from there the vaccine will be distributed further to smaller clinics or spokes. Just so you know this is Minnesota being on the front end of prioritizing this,” says Minnesota Governor Tim Walz.

Governor Tim Walz says Minnesota residents should feel good about the vaccine.

“I think the biggest thing in Minnesota is you need to feel comfortable with where this data is coming from, you need to feel comfortable with the safety around the vaccine, you need to feel comfortable with the plans being made are being done correctly to ensure distribution is both equitable and fair and makes the biggest impact on health and safety of Minnesotans,” Governor Walz says.

The distribution plan will happen in phases. Phase one could be seen as early as next week.

“Start with those that are most susceptible to serious complications and those who care for them, but those guiding principles both at the federal level and in the state of Minnesota are about making sure that those disproportionately impacted have the access they need,” Governor Walz adds.

But first, the vaccines must be approved by the FDA.

“We expect that the FDA will be making a determination on Pfizer vaccine on December 10th and then on Moderna on December 17th. So we’re very excited about what will be coming in terms of vaccines,” says the Director of the Minnesota Department of Health Kris Ehresmann.

Even with a vaccine in site, the governor insists precautionary measures still be taken.

“Just because the vaccine is coming right now it is not a panacea to get us through this. We still, the most effective thing we can do is mask, social distancing mitigation, testing and quarantining in isolation, but it’s coming,” Governor Walz says.

If approved by the FDA this Thursday, distribution of 46 thousand, eight hundred pfizer vaccinations could reach Minnesota by next week.

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