President Biden, maskless and fully vaccinated, announced Monday that COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients will be leading an effort to share US-made vaccines with the rest of the world. "We know America will never be fully safe until the pandemic that’s raging globally is under control," Biden said, per the AP. The president said another 20 million doses will be shared with the world in the next six weeks —including, for the first time, doses of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines approved for use in the US.
Last month, the administration said it would release around 60 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which has not received FDA authorization. The administration has received more than four dozen requests for vaccine doses from countries around the world, including some struggling with surges in cases, Politico reports. "Our nation’s going to be the arsenal of vaccines for the rest of the world," Biden said Monday. He said that unlike countries including China and Russia, "we will not use our vaccines to secure favors from other countries." Officials say they are looking at factors including infection rates and existing vaccine supply when assessing country requests. (Read more coronavirus vaccine stories.)