Feb 12, 2021 - Health

Pentagon approves 20 more military coronavirus vaccination teams

Pentagon Spokesman John Kirby

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby. Photo: Yasin Ozturk/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The Pentagon has approved the deployment of 20 additional COVID-19 vaccination teams to aid inoculation efforts across the U.S., spokesperson John Kirby said Friday.

The big picture: The authorization brings the number of approved vaccination teams to 25, with a total of about 4,700 service members, Kirby told reporters.

  • Only one team of 222 service members has deployed so far. Those troops, which begin work on Monday, will help a federally run vaccination site at California State University.
  • The Pentagon will soon have more details on when and where the four other previously approved teams will be deployed, Kirby said.
  • The vaccination teams "are being organized to help FEMA-identified sites and will be deployed as requirements evolve," he added.

Worth noting: FEMA's full request was for 10,000 troops to be deployed to 100 vaccination sites.

  • “I want to stress the very deliberate and phased approach we’re taking — working in lockstep with FEMA and other federal authorities … What we’re trying to do is to be ready when we’re needed.," Kirby said.

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