President-elect Joe Biden received his first dose of the Pfizer and BioNTech coronavirus vaccine in public on Monday afternoon at ChristianaCare Hospital.
The shot was administered by ChristianaCare's Tabe Masa, who is a nurse practitioner and the head of employee health services at the hospital, according to the Biden transition team.
Biden's vaccination came one week after the first doses of the vaccine were injected into health care workers, and days after the US Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization for a second coronavirus vaccine. Incoming first lady Jill Biden received the vaccine earlier on Monday, the Biden transition team told reporters.
The Pfizer vaccine requires two doses administered several weeks apart in order to reach 95% efficacy. The transition team has not provided details about when the Bidens will receive the second dose.
Biden's transition spokesperson Jen Psaki has said Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff, would receive their vaccinations next week.
The nation's top infectious disease specialist, Dr. Anthony Fauci, told ABC last week that he would strongly recommend that Biden and Harris get vaccinated as soon as possible. He also recommended that President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence receive the vaccination.
Biden told CNN's Jake Tapper earlier this month that he would get the vaccine as soon as Fauci told him it was safe, and that he would do it in public to demonstrate his confidence in it.
Psaki told reporters that Biden and Harris were staggering the vaccine at the recommendation of medical experts. The reason could be that if Biden and Harris experience the reported side effects, such as a headache or fever, they would not have them on the same day.
Pence, second lady Karen Pence and Surgeon General Jerome Adams were administered the vaccine at an on-camera event last week. The Trump administration has said having the vice president receive the vaccine in public was part of the government's efforts to build confidence among the public in the vaccine's safety and efficacy.
Trump has not received the vaccine yet and won't be administered one until it is recommended by the White House medical team, a White House official told CNN last week. The President is still receiving the benefits of the monoclonal antibody cocktail he was given after he tested positive for Covid-19 this fall, the official said, but he is likely to get his shot once it is recommended by the medical team.
Part of Biden's plan to combat the pandemic includes distributing 100 million vaccine shots, enough to cover 50 million people, in his initial 100 days in office. The coronavirus pandemic had killed more than 318,000 Americans as of Monday afternoon.