Friday, August 27, 2021

How does the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices impact innovation and access to COVID-19 vaccines?

By Rachel Sachs, Jacob S. Sherkow, Lisa Larrimore Ouellette, and Nicholson Price

In previous blog posts in this series, we have explored the roles different federal agencies, including the NIH, FDA, and CMS, play in the development and distribution of new healthcare technologies in the fight against COVID-19. But we have devoted much less attention to the CDC and its Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), which has a key role to play in the distribution of vaccines, including those against COVID-19. In this post, we explain the role played by ACIP, discuss several important COVID-19 vaccine decisions ACIP has been involved in, and consider what ACIP’s processes might teach policymakers more generally about innovation and access to health technologies.