Once US healthcare workers get a coronavirus vaccine, who will be next?

If a coronavirus vaccine is approved, it will take months before there are enough doses for everyone. Even in the US, which has lined up the ability to purchase more than 1.5 billion doses of several vaccine candidates, demand will inevitably exceed supply, forcing the US government to grapple with how to fairly distribute those shots.

The first recipients are fairly uncontroversial: Healthcare workers directly interacting with coronavirus patients. But who comes next?

The next tier of distribution broadly depends on whether the US chooses to prioritize recipients’ personal risk or potential to spread the disease. Currently, several panels of US health care experts are developing plans to guide these tough decisions.

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