The Biden administration is working on plans to send about 4 million doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to neighboring countries as a loan, the White House announced Thursday.
According to the Associated Press, the Biden administration has been developing plans to distribute AstraZeneca vaccines to other countries on a “loan” that would involve sending 2.5 million vaccines to Mexico and 1.5 million vaccines to Canada. The AstraZeneca vaccine hasn’t been authorized for emergency use in the United States, meaning that the supply owned by the government has stayed idle even as other countries have begun to publicly administer it. According to ABC News, the U.S. currently owns about 10 million AstraZeneca vaccines.
“Our first priority remains vaccinating the U.S. population,” said White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki during a press conference Thursday. She also remarked that “ensuring our neighbors can contain the virus” is “mission-critical to ending the pandemic.”
Psaki, who noted other countries have requested AstraZeneca vaccines from the U.S., said the tentative plans involve “assessing how we can loan doses” to other countries.
“That is our aim, it’s not fully finalized yet, but that is our aim and what we’re working toward — to Canada and Mexico. This is a complex process, and our team is working with the companies to move it forward,” added Psaki. (Read more from “U.S. Plans To Send AstraZeneca Vaccines To Mexico, Canada” HERE)