Joe Biden has asked Congress to vote on a new funding package to fight the pandemic to the tune of $23.5 billion, but it has not yet been passed.
Thus, the federal government “was forced to reallocate $10 billion of existing funds, skipping billions of dollars dedicated to the Covid-19 response,” the Health Ministry statement added.
The White House had previously indicated that without new funding, vaccines could only be given free of charge to those most at risk.
The Biden administration has spent more than three billion dollars to acquire doses of Covid vaccine in anticipation of the fall.
The U.S. government announced Wednesday that it has purchased 105 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine from the Pfizer-BioNTech alliance in anticipation of the fall in the United States.
The contract, worth $3.2 billion, includes the different dosages for babies, young children and adolescents/adults.
It could also include versions specifically developed against the Omicron variant, as recommended to the government on Tuesday by a panel of experts.
Deliveries are expected to begin at the end of the summer and continue for the following months, the companies said.
The agreement, signed with the Ministries of Defense and Health, includes the option to purchase up to 300 million doses.
“The Biden-Harris administration is determined to do everything we can to make vaccines free and widely available to Americans — and this is an important step in preparing for the fall,” Health Secretary Xavier Becerra said in a statement.