The U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Defense Dept. (DoD) announced a COVID-19 vaccine distribution deal with McKesson.
Under Operation Warp Speed, McKesson will become a central distributor of future COVID-19 vaccines and related supplies needed to administer the pandemic vaccinations, according to a news release.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is executing an existing contract option with McKesson to support the vaccine distribution, as the company already distributed H1N1 vaccines during the H1N1 pandemic that lasted from 2009 to 2010. The current contract includes an option for the distribution of vaccines in the event of a pandemic.
According to HHS and DoD, planning is underway to ensure rapid distribution once the FDA authorizes one or more vaccines, and McKesson will work under the CDC’s guidance to ship the vaccines to administration sites.
“Today’s announcement puts another building block in place as the Nation moves toward a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine,” CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said in the release “America’s march toward one or more safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines is a combined effort between American industry and the federal government. McKesson is a leader in their field, and we welcome their expertise and dedication to public health.”