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Biden approves First Dose First!

Summary:
In a decision that will likely save many lives, Biden Administration officials have indicated they will stop holding back second doses and vaccinate as many people as possible as soon as possible. Second doses will be provided as soon as manufacturing catches up.  Here’s CNN: President-elect Joe Biden will aim to release nearly every available dose of the coronavirus vaccine when he takes office, a break with the Trump administration’s strategy of holding back half of US vaccine production to ensure second doses are available. Releasing nearly all vaccine doses on hand could quickly ratchet up the availability of coronavirus vaccines by allowing more people access to a first dose. It could also be a risky strategy as both Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna’s vaccines

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In a decision that will likely save many lives, Biden Administration officials have indicated they will stop holding back second doses and vaccinate as many people as possible as soon as possible. Second doses will be provided as soon as manufacturing catches up.  Here’s CNN:

President-elect Joe Biden will aim to release nearly every available dose of the coronavirus vaccine when he takes office, a break with the Trump administration’s strategy of holding back half of US vaccine production to ensure second doses are available.

Releasing nearly all vaccine doses on hand could quickly ratchet up the availability of coronavirus vaccines by allowing more people access to a first dose. It could also be a risky strategy as both Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna’s vaccines require two doses, administered at specific intervals, and vaccine manufacturing has not ramped up as rapidly as many experts had hoped.

There’s a small risk, but in my view the potential gains outweigh the risks by more than 10 to 1.  And more vaccines seem to be on the way.

I see this an another big win for the Tabarrok/Cowen school of epidemiology.  (As well as other bloggers like Scott Aaronson.)

Scott Sumner
Scott B. Sumner is Research Fellow at the Independent Institute, the Director of the Program on Monetary Policy at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University and an economist who teaches at Bentley University in Waltham, Massachusetts. His economics blog, The Money Illusion, popularized the idea of nominal GDP targeting, which says that the Fed should target nominal GDP—i.e., real GDP growth plus the rate of inflation—to better "induce the correct level of business investment". In May 2012, Chicago Fed President Charles L. Evans became the first sitting member of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) to endorse the idea.

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