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A screenshot of NIAID director Anthony Fauci on NBC's "Nightly News" on Tuesday. Photo: NBC

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and NIAID director Anthony Fauci said Tuesday they expect a coronavirus vaccine to be rolled out widely in the U.S. by next spring.

Of note: Fauci said to NBC News the Pfizer vaccine could get FDA emergency approval within weeks. Azar told the network he expects it to be available to Americans in priority categories, like those most at risk and health care workers, by the year's end to early January. Fauci said it could happen by December.

  • Azar believes there should be "enough for all Americans by the end of March to early April to have general vaccination programs."

Why it matters: Pfizer and BioNTech's preliminary analysis suggests their vaccine is 90% effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19, offering the best hope yet of curbing the pandemic, as coronavirus cases and related hospitalizations reach record highs.

  • Fauci told CNN Tuesday he believes "the incentive to get vaccinated will be greatly enhanced by the degree of efficacy."
  • "When you hear something is 90 to 95% effective, it makes it much more likely that someone would want to get vaccinated," he added.

Go deeper

Operation Warp Speed leader: COVID vaccine push is "isolated from a political environment"

Moncef Slaoui in the Rose Garden on Nov. 13. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Moncef Slaoui, the White House's top scientific adviser to Operation Warp Speed, told Chuck Todd on "Meet the Press" on Sunday that the Trump administration's efforts to accelerate the development of a coronavirus vaccine is "isolated from a political environment" and that a change in administration "doesn't, frankly, make a difference" on its efficacy.

Why it matters: Slaoui told ABC's George Stephanopoulos on Sunday that he has not yet had contact with Joe Biden's transition team, as the president-elect prepares to inherit one of the country's biggest crises ahead of an expected vaccine distribution effort that would require massive logistical cooperation between states and the federal government.

10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

California governor and family in quarantine after coronavirus exposure

California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) tweeted late Sunday that he and his family are quarantining after being exposed to COVID-19.

Details: Newsom said they learned Friday that three of his children had come into contact with a California Highway Patrol officer who tested positive for the coronavirus. "Thankfully, the entire family tested negative today," Newsom said.

Updated 22 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Sen. Kelly Loeffler to continue quarantine after receiving negative COVID test

Sen. Kelly Loeffler addresses supporters during a rally on Thursday. Photo: Jessica McGowan/Getty Images

Sen. Kelly Loeffler's (R-Ga.) campaign announced Sunday that a previously inconclusive coronavirus test came back negative, but she will continue to follow CDC guidelines and self-isolate until she's able to get a more conclusive negative result.

Why it matters: Loeffler has been campaigning at events ahead of a Jan. 5 runoff in elections that'll decide which party holds the Senate majority. Vice President Mike Pence was with her on Friday.