U.S. President Donald Trump will sign a new executive order Tuesday to ensure all government agencies will prioritize the needs of Americans above others in coronavirus vaccinations.
The "America First" executive order is designed to ensure that the country's efforts will place a low priority on assisting other countries in vaccinating their respective populace.
A senior Trump administration official said that the order was a "reaffirmation" of the president's commitment to the American people.
Under the order, government agencies such as the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development have been ordered to work together to vaccinate the populace and then help the country's international partners in doing the same.
The same official, who did not want to be identified, said that the timeline for providing foreign assistance will mainly be dependent on the supply and demand of COVID-19 vaccines.
The anticipated rollout of an effective vaccine will be sometime during the second quarter after president-elect Joe Biden will take office. Political experts believe that Biden will likely limit the impact of Trump's order once he takes power.
Trump is expected to sign the executive order after his meeting with administration officials and drug distributors at the White House. The meeting will mostly be about the process of reviewing and distributing the top vaccine candidates.
The signing of the executive order comes just days before the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is set to meet Thursday to review Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine candidate. The FDA is also scheduled to hold another meeting Dec. 17 to review Moderna's coronavirus vaccine candidate.
Health officials have said that the inoculation of the general public will likely take months. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said that not everyone will receive a dose until at least the end of the second quarter.
Earlier in the year, Trump had signed a deal with Pfizer to purchase 100 million doses of its vaccine candidate if it was proven to be effective in treating the disease. The New York Times reported that Trump declines an offer made by Pfizer Monday for additional doses.