In support of Operation Warp Speed (OWS), the Trump Administration is preparing to provide ancillary supply kits to help healthcare workers who will be administering COVID-19 vaccines. Several candidate vaccines are in clinical trials to test their safety and efficacy; the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) would need to approve or authorize any vaccine for use.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently contracted with McKesson Corporation to produce, store and distribute these vaccine ancillary supply kits on behalf of the Strategic National Stockpile. Each kit will contain enough supplies to administer up to 100 doses of vaccine and will include:
- Needles (various sizes for the population served by the ordering vaccination provider)
- Alcohol prep pads
- Surgical masks and face shields for vaccinators
- COVID-19 vaccination record cards for vaccine recipients
- Needle information card
Mixing kits with syringes, needles, and other needed supplies will also be included for COVID-19 vaccines that require reconstitution with diluent or adjuvant at the point of administration. Ancillary supply kits will not include sharps containers, gloves, and bandages. Additional personal protective equipment may be needed depending on vaccination provider site needs.
“Operation Warp Speed is laying the necessary groundwork for the rollout of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine, including working for months to ensure we have enough ancillary supplies like needles and syringes” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “With the Strategic National Stockpile and McKesson putting together the vaccine kits with needles, syringes, and PPE needed to vaccinate every American, we’ll ensure that safe and effective vaccines can reach Americans and start saving lives as soon as possible.”
“Ensuring that ancillary supply kits are ready to safely administer a COVID-19 vaccine is one more step toward halting the spread of this disease,” said HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Robert Kadlec, M.D., who oversees the Strategic National Stockpile. “Since the onset of this pandemic, a multi-agency federal team has been working together and closely with our industry partners to strategically source and procure adequate quantities of ancillary supplies based on the requirements for each of the multiple vaccine candidates. Working with our industry partners, we are making certain we are ready to begin safe and effective vaccinations in the United States as soon as an FDA-approved or authorized vaccine is available.”
McKesson also is contracted to distribute the COVID-19 vaccines to administration sites on behalf of the federal government and under the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. COVID-19 ancillary supply kits will be automatically distributed in amounts to match vaccine orders and will be provided at no cost to enrolled COVID-19 vaccination providers. Providers do not need to order these supplies in anticipation of administering the vaccine. Vaccination provider facilities and organizations must enroll in the federal COVID-19 Vaccination Program coordinated through their jurisdiction’s immunization program.
For additional information on the COVID-19 vaccine distribution strategy:
- Preliminary Strategy for Distributing a COVID-19 Vaccine
- COVID-19 Vaccination Program Interim Playbook
About Operation Warp Speed (OWS):
OWS is a partnership among components of HHS and the Department of Defense, engaging with private firms and other federal agencies, and coordinating among existing HHS-wide efforts to accelerate the development, manufacturing, and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics.
About HHS, ASPR, and the Strategic National Stockpile:
HHS works to enhance and protect the health and well-being of all Americans, providing for effective health and human services and fostering advances in medicine, public health, and social services. The mission of ASPR is to save lives and protect Americans from 21st century health security threats. Within ASPR, the Strategic National Stockpile supplements state and local supplies during public health emergencies. The supplies, medicines, and devices for life-saving care contained in the stockpile can be used as a short-term, stopgap buffer when supplies may not be immediately available or sufficient. To learn more about federal support for the nationwide COVID-19 response, visit coronavirus.gov.