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Governor extends Public Health Emergency, updates rules to accommodate COVID-19 vaccine

COVID-19 Metro ATL

Governor extends Public Health Emergency, updates rules to accommodate COVID-19 vaccine

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A medical professional administers a blood test to a vaccine trial participant at Emory's Hope Clinic. August 10, 2020. Image provided to Decaturish
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Atlanta, GA — Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp’s latest executive orders regarding the COVID-19 pandemic include a provision that will make it easier to distribute a vaccine.

“On November 30, 2020, Governor Brian P. Kemp signed Executive Order 11.30.20.01 and Executive Order 11.30.20.02, extending Georgia’s Public Health State of Emergency until January 8, 2021, and extending current COVID-19 restrictions,” Kemp’s office announced.  “Executive Order 11.30.20.02 also includes changes that allow nurses and pharmacists to administer the pending COVID-19 vaccine, including in a drive-thru setting, and permits any nurse or pharmacist to observe patients for the requisite 15-minute window after receiving the vaccine. Both Orders take effect on December 1, 2020, at 12:00 AM. Executive Order 11.30.20.02 runs through December 15 at 11:59 PM. The Governor’s executive orders are available to be read here.”

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told CBS that vaccines might be available in the United States before Christmas and governors would decide which people would get vaccines first. It is likely that the vaccines will first go to healthcare providers on the front-lines, first responders and patients in nursing homes before they are available to the general public.

There are three vaccines out there – created by Moderna, Pfizer and AstraZeneca  – and they are all considered highly effective, according to the Washington Post. The Post says that Moderna’s vaccine is 95 percent effective, Pfizer’s is more than 90 percent effective and AstraZeneca’s is up to 90 percent effective.

The vaccines require FDA approval.

“The government projects that Pfizer and Moderna will provide 40 million doses, enough for 20 million people, by the end of the year,” the Washington Post reported. “AstraZeneca has said the first 4 million doses could be ready in December, and 40 million could be delivered in the first quarter of 2021.”

To see the Post’s full article about the three vaccines, click here.

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