DETROIT — The impending release of COVID-19 vaccines has automakers and suppliers working on distribution plans for employees.
Automakers said they are waiting for direct instruction from government officials as they prepare for the release of vaccines by Pfizer Inc., Moderna Inc. and other producers.
The Wall Street Journal reported that many industries are fighting for priority as the vaccine awaits approval by the Food and Drug Administration. The expectation is the vaccine will primarily go first to front-line health care workers and long-term care facility residents.
The Detroit 3, in statements Friday, said they are working on ways to get employees access to the vaccine once it becomes available. They are in close contact with health officials.
Ford Motor Co. said the primary vaccination focus will be on its essential workers, including those in manufacturing plants, warehouses, workplace-dependent employees and those required to travel.
General Motors said: “As we’ve done throughout the pandemic, GM will communicate with employees as we get more information on vaccine distribution plans.”
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has a team with medical professionals who are researching and developing the most effective employee distribution approach.
Along with the Detroit 3, Toyota is discussing distribution but did not release any specific plans to Automotive News.
A spokesman for Nissan Motor Co., which also has several U.S. assembly plants, said the company is “evaluating options, but aren’t sharing details at this time.”
American Honda said: “Like other companies, Honda is awaiting a determination from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration regarding use of the vaccines. Honda has established a working group that is studying potential distribution options and other factors related to the vaccines.”