Across the country, the need for a COVID-19 vaccine is growing. We’re getting closer to doses being cleared for distribution, but they won’t be available for everyone right away. The CDC’s team of advisers voted Tuesday on recommendations for who should get the COVID vaccine first. The emergency meeting comes as states prepare to receive COVID-19 vaccines as early as mid-December if one is authorized. And the decision came down to a 13 to one vote. “The vaccine should be delivered to healthcare providers and to those individuals living in long term congregate facilities,” said Dr. Jose Romero, chair of the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. The vote comes as we reach 13.7 million cases and nearly 270,000 deaths nationwide. “Sadly we’re already seeing the impact of holiday travel in a bad way with record numbers now of infected people hospitalized patients and sadly deaths from COVID,” said Dr. Helen Boucher, chief of geographic medicine and infectious diseases at Tufts Medical Center. One thing to keep in mind is that not everyone in these groups will be able to get the vaccine when it becomes available. “There isn’t enough vaccination to go around at this time, and so each individual institution will need to decide how they’re going to prioritize that vaccine,” said Romero. In the meantime, places like UNLV are preparing to help store the vaccines. The two vaccines that are likely to be approved first, the Moderna vaccine and the Pfizer vaccine, because they’re made out of Messenger RNA. They require cold temperatures for storage,” said Dr. Marc Kahn, dean of the UNLV School of Medicine. So they already have storage ready at the school. “At UNLV, we have one of those minus 80-degrees freezers,” said Kahn. “That’s not your typical freezer that you buy in an appliance store.” After the vaccine is released, the university waits for guidance. “It’s going to go to states first,” said Kahn. “And then the states are going to distribute that vaccine through their health departments, and the health departments are going to distribute it to hospitals and physician groups, etc.” Until then, doctors are warning the holidays are a very high-risk season for the pandemic. “The challenge is the vaccine is going to take many months to roll out, and in that time we have to be extra careful,” said Dr. Tom Frieden, a former CDC director.