Transcript: CDC Update on COVID-19

MESSONNIER: YEAH. I CERTAINLY UNDERSTAND HOW PEOPLE ARE NERVOUS. AND I CAN TELL YOU THAT MY PARENTS, WHO ARE IN THEIR 80s ARE ALSO NERVOUS. THAT’S WHY IT IS SO IMPORTANT FOR YOU TO HELP US GET THE WORD OUT THAT, YOU KNOW, WE’RE STUDYING THESE VACCINES CLOSELY. AND OUR

SYSTEMS TO LOOK FOR ADVERSE EVENTS ARE INCREDIBLY ROBUST. WE ARE

NOT SEEING ANY WORRISOME SIGNALS. THE ONLY THING THAT WE HAVE

SEEN IS THESE SEVERE ALLERGIC REACTIONS. I CONTINUE TO BELIEVE THAT

THE RISK OF COVID AND THE RISK OF POOR OUTCOMES, ESPECIALLY IN SENIOR

CITIZENS, MAKES IT IMPERATIVE THAT PEOPLE GO AHEAD AND GET

VACCINATED AS SOON AS IT’S AVAILABLE TO THEM.

HAYNES: NEXT QUESTION, PLEASE.

OPRATOR: THANK YOU. AND OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM HELEN BRANSWELL FROM STAT. YOUR LINE IS NOW OPEN.

STAT: THANKS VERY MUCH FOR TAKING MY QUESTION. YOU MENTIONED THAT

THE ADVICE IS PEOPLE WHO GET EITHER THE PFIZER OR THE MODERNA

VACCINE SHOULD BE MONITORED AFTER VACCINATION. IS IT THE CDC’S THINKING AT THIS POINT THAT IT IS A CLASS EFFECT THAT BOTH THE MRNA

VACCINES MAY INDUCE ANAPHYLAXIS AT A HIGHER RATE THAN ONE WOULD

EXPECT?

MESSONNIER: THANK YOU. YES. AT THIS POINT, WE THINK THAT IT IS SOMETHING THAT IS SEEN WITH BOTH VACCINES AND, THEREFORE, OUR

RECOMMENDATIONS APPLY TO BOTH VACCINES. AS YOU CAN IMAGINE,

THERE ARE TREMENDOUS EFFORTS UNDERWAY RIGHT NOW TO TRY TO

UNDERSTAND WHAT MIGHT BE THE CAUSE OF THIS SEVERE ALLERGIC

REACTION WITH BOTH VACCINES. I DON’T THINK WE HAVE ANYTHING

DEFINITIVE TO SAY. AT THIS POINT, OUR RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THIS APPLY

TO BOTH VACCINES.

HAYNES: NEXT QUESTION, PLEASE.

OPERATOR: THANK YOU. AND OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM RONNY RABIN FROM THE NEW YORK TIMES. YOUR LINE IS NOW OPEN.

NY TIMES: YEAH. HELLO. ON A CALL LAST WEEK, YOU MENTIONED THAT INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE HAD ALLERGIC REACTIONS TO INGREDIENTS POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL AND POLYSORBATE SHOULD NOT TAKE THE VACCINE. IS THAT A STANDING RECOMMENDATION? IS THERE ANYONE THAT SHOULD NOT RECEIVE THE VACCINE, IF ANYONE?

MESSONNIER: DR. CLARK, DO YOU WANT TO SPEAK TO THAT?

CLARK: SURE. I THINK IT’S IMPORTANT FOR FOLKS TO KNOW THAT WHEN THEY’RE RECOMMENDED A VACCINE, THEY CAN RECEIVE IT. THE OBSERVATION

PERIODS, YOU KNOW, MOST PEOPLE WILL NEED TO BE OBSERVED FOR 15

MINUTES AFTERWARDS. PEOPLE WHO HAVE A HISTORY OF ANAPHYLAXIS OR

IMMEDIATE ALLERGIC REACTIONS WILL NEED TO BE OBSERVED FOR 30

MINUTES. IT IS A VERY SPECIFIC CONTRAINDICATION. IF YOU HAD AN

IMMEDIATE REACTION TO YOUR FIRST DOSE, DON’T GET A SECOND DOSE. AND

IF YOU HAVE A KNOWN ALLERGY TO COMPONENTS OF THE VACCINE OR VERY

CLOSELY RELATED COMPOUNDS IN THE VACCINE, WE RECOMMEND YOU NOT

GET VACCINATED AT THIS TIME.

HAYNES: NEXT QUESTION, PLEASE.

OPERATOR: THANK YOU. OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM ADAM GLASBY FROM KTHV. YOUR LINE IS NOW OPEN.

KTHV: THANK YOU. DOCTOR, YOU REFERRED TO THE IMPERATIVE THAT PEOPLE,

WHEN IT IS THEIR TURN IN LINE TO GET VACCINATED, OUGHT TO ROLL UP

THEIR SLEEVES GIVEN THE RELATIVE BENEFITS OF VACCINATION OVER

POSSIBLY GETTING COVID. SO I WANTED TO ASK FOR A GENERAL OVERVIEW

WHERE WE’RE AT ON THE PANDEMIC RIGHT NOW. WE KNOW THAT THE COVID

VIEW WEEKLY HAS COME OUT FROM CDC, BUT THEY’RE HARD TO INTERPRET

WITH A DOUBLE HOLIDAY WEEK. SO I’M JUST ASKING THE QUESTION: WHERE

ARE WE AT RIGHT NOW WITH SO MANY STATES APPARENTLY SEEING SURGES

AND HOW LONG WOULD IT TAKE BEFORE THE VACCINE COULD ACTUALLY

MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN THAT? IT CERTAINLY WOULDN’T BE NEXT WEEK OR

HAYNES: ADAM. THIS IS BEN HAYNES FROM THE MEDIA OFFICE. WE’LL TOUCH BASE WITH YOU FOLLOWING THE BRIEFING. NEXT QUESTION, PLEASE.

OPERATOR: THANK YOU. OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM JEREMY OSLIN FROM THE STAR TRIBUNE. YOUR LINE IS NOW OPEN.

STAR TRIBUNE: YEAH. I JUST WANTED TO CLARIFY. IS ANYTHING WITH THESE ADVERSE EVENTS RESULTING IN A CHANGE IN RECOMMENDATION IN THE

DISTRIBUTION? AND, DOCTOR, CAN YOU COMMENT ON THE INITIAL ROLL-OUT

OF VACCINATIONS? SOME STATES IT’S BEEN CRITICIZED AS BEING A LITTLE

SLOW. ARE THINGS GOING ON SCHEDULE AND ARE YOU PLEASED WITH THAT

INITIAL ROLL-OUT?

MESSONNIER: YEAH. THANKS FOR THAT QUESTION. NO, THIS INFORMATION ABOUT ANAPHYLAXIS HASN’T HAD SIGNIFICANT EFFECTS IN OUR PLANS FOR

DISTRIBUTION. THE ONE CAVEAT WHICH IS NOT NEW AND IS NOT DIFFERENT

THAN WHAT WE SAID LAST WEEK IS THAT WE WANT TO BE SURE THAT ANY

ADMINISTRATION SITE THAT IS ANY PLACE THAT IS ADMINISTERING THE

VACCINE IS PREPARED TO TREAT SOMEBODY IF THEY HAD A SEVERE

ALLERGIC REACTION. AGAIN, THESE EVENTS ARE RARE. BUT IMMUNIZATION

SITE NEEDS TO BE PREPARED. THEIR STAFF NEED TO BE TRAINED, AND THEY

NEED TO KNOW WHAT TO DO IF A PATIENT HAS ANAPHYLAXIS. SO THAT’S NOT

A CHANGE FROM WHAT WE’VE SAID, FRANKLY, SINCE THE LAUNCH OF THIS

CAMPAIGN, BUT THIS MMWR DOES GIVE US THE OPPORTUNITY TO EMPHASIZE

THAT. IN TERMS OF THE ROLL-OUT, YOU KNOW, WE ARE TALKING ABOUT NEW

VACCINES THAT ARE SLIGHTLY COMPLICATED IN TERMS OF STORAGE AND

HANDLING AND ADMINISTRATION AND THE FACT THAT WE’RE REALLY

MOVING FORWARD QUICKLY WITH A NEED TO GET FOLKS READY TO BE ABLE

TO PREPARE THAT VACCINE, FOLKS EDUCATED SO THAT THEY CAN EDUCATE

THE PEOPLE THAT ARE GETTING VACCINATED. AND WE LAUNCH THIS ALL

DURING THE HOLIDAY WEEKS. SO, I THINK BECAUSE OF THAT, MANY

JURISDICTIONS HAD PLANNED FOR A SLIGHTLY MEASURED INITIAL WEEKS OF

ROLL-OUT TO GET THEM COMFORTABLE WITH THE VACCINE AND AGAIN TO

ACCOUNT FOR IT BEING THE HOLIDAY WEEK. NOW THAT THE HOLIDAY IS

OVER, I EXPECT THIS PROGRAM TO CONTINUE TO ESCALATE AND ACTUALLY

ESCALATE REALLY QUICKLY. I’M EXCITED THAT MORE THAN FOUR MILLION

PEOPLE IN THE UNITED STATES HAVE ALREADY BEGUN GETTING VACCINATED

AND BEGUN THEIR PROTECTION AGAINST COVID, AND I THINK THAT WE’RE

GOING TO, AS WE GET MORE EXPERIENCE AND AS FOLKS GET COMFORTABLE

WITH THE VACCINE, BOTH IN THE PUBLIC AND THOSE ADMINISTERING THE

VACCINE, I THINK THAT THOSE NUMBERS ARE REALLY GOING TO GO UP

QUICKLY. THANK YOU.

HAYNES: NEXT QUESTION, PLEASE. BRITTANY,

OPERATOR: OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM JESSE HOLMAN. YOUR LINE IS OPEN.YOU MAY ASK YOUR QUESTION.

HOLMAN: HI. THANKS FOR DOING THIS. SOME HEALTH WORKERS ARE REFUSING TO TAKE THE COVID VACCINE OR DECIDING TO TAKE UNTIL LATER. I THINK IN

NEW YORK IT IS ABOUT 30% THAT DON’T WANT TO TAKE IT. WHAT CAN BE

DONE ABOUT THIS? OR HOW CAN WE CONVINCE THESE PEOPLE WHO MIGHT BE

CONCERNED ABOUT IT TO TAKE THE VACCINE AND BE WORRIED ABOUT THE

MESSAGE THAT THAT COULD POTENTIALLY SEND TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC.

MESSONNIER: YEAH. THANKS FOR THAT QUESTION. I AM DEFINITELY CONCERNED THAT HEALTH CARE WORKERS ARE ELECTING TO WAIT TO GET VACCINATED. AND TO ME, IT REALLY MAKES IT EXCEEDINGLY IMPORTANT THAT WE GET CORRECT INFORMATION TO HEALTH CARE WORKERS AND THAT WE QUICKLY DISPENSE WITH MYTHS AND MISINFORMATION. ONE OF THE REALITIES OF THIS VACCINE IS THAT WE HAVE LIMITED TIME FROM THE TIME THAT THE VACCINES WERE AUTHORIZED BY FDA AND RECOMMENDED BY CDC BEFORE THEY ACTUALLY HIT THE SHELVES. FOR ROUTINE VACCINES, WE HAVE A MUCH LONGER TIME TO MAKE SURE THAT HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS ARE

EDUCATED SO THAT THEY CAN EDUCATE THEIR PATIENTS. I RECOGNIZE THIS

ALL HAPPENED QUICKLY, AND IT HAPPENED OVER THE HOLIDAYS. WE NEED

TO MAKE SURE THAT HEALTH CARE WORKERS HAVE THE CORRECT

INFORMATION. THESE ARE SAFE AND EFFECTIVE VACCINES. WE HAVE GOOD

DATA TO SHOW THAT. I REALLY WANT TO GET THAT MESSAGE OUT TO

HEALTH CARE WORKERS BECAUSE, YOU’RE RIGHT, HEALTH CARE WORKERS,

WE WANT THEM NOT ONLY TO PROTECT THEMSELVES, BUT WE ALSO WANT

THEM TO BE EDUCATING THEIR PATIENTS SO THAT EVERYONE ACROSS THE

UNITED STATES UNDERSTANDS THAT THESE VACCINES ARE AVAILABLE, THAT

THEY HAVE A GOOD SAFETY PROFILE, THAT THEY ARE WORKING AND THAT

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