The president is scheduled to tour the National Institutes of Health on Thursday afternoon and deliver remarks to staff there. He had indicated last month his administration was seeking another 200 million doses of the two vaccines authorized for emergency use in the United States to be available this summer — 100 million of the product developed by Pfizer and German company BioNTech, and 100 million of the product developed by Moderna.
The schedule for delivery of the additional doses was not immediately clear. The new deals are unlikely to make vaccine widely available much sooner than originally anticipated, but they would prevent a shortfall later in the year. The administration was exercising options built into existing contracts with the two companies, making timing a central question. A Pfizer executive said in a recent interview with USA Today that the company expects to halve its production time, expediting the availability of its product globally.