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Biden listens to Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla speak at the Pfizer Kalamazoo Manufacturing Site in Portage, Michigan. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said Friday that the company was adding suppliers and expanding it manufacturing capacity to ramp up production of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine.

The big picture: Bourla made the announcement alongside President Biden, who reiterated his earlier comments that the U.S. was on track to have enough vaccine supply for all Americans by the end of July.

What they're saying: “We expect to increase the number of doses being shipped from the U.S., for the U.S. from ... 5 million doses per week, which is the average now, to more than double,” Bourla said from a Pfizer factory, just outside Kalamazoo, Michigan.

  • Pfizer is now on track to deliver 120 million doses to the U.S. by the end of March, and 200 million doses by the end of May, Bourla said, two months ahead of schedule.
  • Bourla also said Pfizer was seeking to update its FDA emergency use authorization to allow its vaccine to be stored at normal freezer temperatures, which would make shipping and distribution easier.
  • He also commended the Biden administration, which he called a "great ally."

Biden, after touring the Pfizer facility, said: "I can't give you a date when this crisis will end. But I can tell you we're doing everything possible to have that day come sooner rather than later."

  • He also called on Congress to pass his $1.9 trillion COVID relief package, and encouraged Americans to get the vaccine when available and continue to wear masks and social distance.

Worth noting: The extreme winter weather this week delayed the delivery of 6 million COVID-19 vaccine doses, but the logistical hurdles are expected to be resolved by next week, the White House coronavirus task force said earlier Friday, Axios' Marisa Fernandez reported.

Go deeper: U.S. administering average of 1.7 million vaccine doses per day

Go deeper

Feb 19, 2021 - Health

Vaccine supply expected to surge soon

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

The U.S. supply of coronavirus vaccines is expected to significantly expand over the next few months, with more than enough doses available to vaccinate all U.S. adults before the end of July, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: If manufacturing goes according to plan, the intense competition for shots will end relatively soon, and attention will turn instead to increasing vaccine uptake.

Feb 19, 2021 - Health

Data finds Pfizer vaccine highly effective after first dose, can be stored in normal freezers

Photo: Robert Michael/picture alliance via Getty Images

Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine may be more effective after just one shot than researchers had previously realized, and can be stored for two weeks at standard temperatures typically found in pharmaceutical freezers and refrigerators, according to new data.

Why it matters: The findings about first-dose efficacy, which appear in a new analysis published in The Lancet, appear to support a strategy of delaying second shots in order to make the most of limited supplies. That's what the U.K. has done, and some experts have called for a similar approach in the U.S.

Feb 19, 2021 - Health

Texas hospitals evacuate patients, conserve resources amid outages

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The deadly winter storm in Texas has bombarded hospitals throughout the state.

Why it matters: Doctors have been working to conserve resources, pause non-emergency surgeries, evacuate patients and push back coronavirus vaccine shots.