Moderna vaccine is being distributed across the country

Moderna vaccine is being distributed across the country

This will expand the rollout of the vaccine, launched by Pfizer

Shipments of COVID-19 vaccines from Moderna, the second approved coronavirus vaccine in the country, began leaving warehouses Sunday and being delivered to medical facilities across the United States.

The distributor, McKesson, said in a statement that delivery of vaccines and vaccination support kits began shortly after 6 a.m. U.S. East Coast time.

The distribution of the Moderna vaccine to more than 3,700 locations in the U.S. will greatly expand the vaccine rollout begun last week by Pfizer. The U.S. government plans to deliver 5.9 million doses of Moderna vaccine and 2 million doses to Pfizer this week.

But the ambitious goal of delivering the first vaccine to 20 million Americans by the end of the year could be pushed back to the first week of January, Army Gen. Gustav Perna told reporters Saturday.

The start of Moderna vaccine distribution will greatly expand the availability of COVID-19 vaccines, at a time when the number of fatal cases of the respiratory disease in the country the other day exceeded 310,000.

Some states choose to use Moderna vaccine for hard-to-reach areas because it can be stored for up to 30 days in refrigerators at standard temperatures. The Pfizer vaccine must be shipped and stored at -70 degrees and can only be stored for five days in standard refrigerators.