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Sault Tribe Health Director Dr. Leo Chugunov provided the following information about the Moderna vaccine for COVID-19, based on information received on Dec. 17:

1. The vaccine was not tested on children, pregnant women or patients who are immunocompromised.

2. It is a two-dose vaccine, to be administered 28 days apart, one week longer than the two-dose Pfizer vaccine. There is a grace period: The second dose could be given between day 25 and day 33. Most side effects appear after the second dose. They include: Injection site pain (91.6%), fatigue, (68.5%), headache (63%), muscle pain (59.6%), joint pain (44.8%), and chills (43.4%).

3. The Sault Tribe may expect, at least, 100 doses (10 vials with 10 doses in each) in the first shipment.

4. It will be shipped frozen. It could be stored:
A. Frozen for 6 months.
B. Refrigerated for 30 days.
C. At room temperature for 12 hours.

5. No dilution is necessary; unlike the Pfizer vaccine, it comes ready to be administered.

6. Native Americans represented .5% of all participants in the Phase 3 study.

7. If given emergency use authorization, it could be expected to arrive to Bemidji, Minn., on Dec. 21 or 22. The Sault Tribe may receive it as early as Dec. 22 or 23.

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Photo by Ken Bosma / CC BY