What we know about the first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines, expected in Spokane next week

The first COVID-19 vaccine is expected to arrive in Washington in just a few days. 

The FDA granted Pfizer emergency use authorization on Friday, a major step on the path forward. 

In the first shipment, Spokane County will be getting 3,900 doses. Those will be given to a very specific group. Most people won’t be able to get it for several months. 

Just 11 months since the virus was made known to the world, the first COVID-19 vaccine has been approved. 

The FDA saying in a statement, “Efforts to speed the vaccine development have not sacrificed standards,” adding it’s unclear how long immunity will last after a person receives both doses of the vaccine. 

Pfizer is expected to start shipping the first 2.9 million doses to more than 600 locations across the country first thing in the morning. 

Roughly 32,000 doses will land in Washington state. 

READ: Spokane set to receive 3,900 COVID-19 vaccines with first shipment

King County will get roughly one-third of the first shipment, about 10,700 doses. The State Dept. of Health is setting aside 3,900 for Spokane County. 

First in line for the vaccine will be nursing home residents and staff, high risk healthcare workers and first responders. 

More than 2,700 Americans have died from COVID-19 in just the past 24 hours, and the CDC is now projecting the U.S. death toll could reach 362,000 by January 2. That’s nearly 70,000 Americans dead in just 3 weeks. 

The vaccine itself is free to Americans, however, some clinics may charge a fee to administer it. The DOH says that cost will be covered by most insurance companies.