Biden receives second dose of COVID-19 vaccine

Yahoo Finance's Anjalee Khemlani joins Kristin Myers to break down the latest coronavirus developments as President-elect Joe Biden receives his second vaccine shot.

Video Transcript

KRISTIN MYERS: I want to bring on Yahoo Finance's Anjalee Khemlani now to talk about that, with the President-elect saying, of course, that he is trying to get as many people vaccinated against this virus as possible, going after the UK method, which is holding back no second doses, instead trying to get that first dose in as many arms as possible.

ANJALEE KHEMLANI: That's correct, Kristin. And we also know that there is a lot of hope, especially on the US side, for other contenders to enter the field in that time period. So while it is a plan that holds a lot of risk, we have seen reports that maybe Johnson & Johnson will be out pretty soon with some interim results, as well as looking for, you know, early in the first quarter some sort of insight into Novavax. And that puts to other potential contenders on the table. We're also waiting for AstraZeneca, which we know is out in the UK. And we're-- we are still waiting for the definitive plan.

President-elect Biden did mention at the-- the-- event just now that he is likely to release the plan on Thursday. So we do have to wait until then to see what are the full details there. But we do know that getting as many doses out into the public as possible is the goal. Right now we also know that while we do have doses out there, there are not enough people taking them. We've seen reports of those wasted doses. So I think that one of those things also to be looking for is what he plans to do about addressing those priority levels and opening that up as things roll out, Kristin.

KRISTIN MYERS: Yeah, Anjalee, if you could tell us just a little bit more about that because we keep hearing these news reports. We keep hearing Dr. Fauci, for example, saying we are not where we want to be, at least when it comes to that vaccination. As you just mentioned, we have those vaccines that are essentially expiring on the shelves before they could even get into the arms of folks. We have pharmaceutical companies saying and pledging that they are going to up their production of the vaccine. Where are we right now when it comes to the numbers of vaccinations?

ANJALEE KHEMLANI: Right. So now we know that there are at least 25 million doses that have been shipped out. And that, of course, surpasses what the original number was for by the end of December 2020. We never reached that point then. But it seems in the first couple of weeks, or rather first week, where we're at right now, is where they've really ramped up. It's been X-fold increase. We know that more than or about 9 million doses have been administered now. And that's coming up from, I think, somewhere in the 2-million mark at the end of last year.

So it's really a significant jump in that based on records from the CDC. We know that there is a time lag, number one, in the reporting not only from the states to the CDC, but then from them turning it around. And we also know that there is no set way to really monitor internally and at the site what's going on with these doses. And that leads back to the idea of sort of this patchwork state-by-state sort of situation where nothing is being monitored at a federal level or being taken care of at a federal level. And so that's one of the other things that I think we're waiting to hear from a President-elect Biden's team about whether or not the federal government will play a more definitive role.

KRISTIN MYERS: Absolutely. And as you mentioned, Anjalee, we don't have the full details yet of President-elect Biden's plan, although he does say, as a reminder for everyone, that he's planning on not withholding that second dose and getting that first dose in as many arms as possible. Yahoo Finance's Anjalee Khemlani, thank you so much for-- for hopping on and talking us through everything that is happening there, as you just saw President-elect Joe Biden receiving that second dose of the vaccine.