As Millions Get Shots, F.D.A. Struggles to Get Safety Monitoring System Running

More than 34 million Americans have received Covid vaccines, but the much-touted system the government designed to monitor any dangerous reactions won’t be capable of analyzing safety data for weeks or months, according to numerous federal health officials.

For now, federal regulators are counting on a patchwork of existing programs that they acknowledge are inadequate because of small sample size, missing critical data or other problems.

Clinical trials have shown both of the vaccines authorized in the United States — one from Pfizer-BioNTech and the other from Moderna — to be highly protective and safe against the coronavirus.

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