Trump administration officials announced on Friday the purchase of 100 million additional doses of an upcoming vaccine from drugmaker Moderna. That's on top of a previous purchase of 100 million doses.
The Food and Drug Administration's expert advisory panel is scheduled to review Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Moderna's vaccine next Thursday, with a decision on whether to give it full approval soon thereafter.
“We appreciate the confidence that the U.S. government continues to have in mRNA-1273, our COVID-19 vaccine candidate, demonstrated by this increased supply agreement,” Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in a statement.
U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said the purchase will further boost the country's vaccination capabilities.
"This new federal purchase can give Americans even greater confidence we will have enough supply to vaccinate all Americans who want it by the second quarter of 2021," he said in a statement.
The announcement of the purchase comes as the Trump administration put pressure on the head of the FDA to approve Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine by the end of the day, a step the agency was already likely to take by the weekend.
On Thursday, Moderna announced it had begun administering its coronavirus vaccine to adolescents as part of the second phase of its trial.