NEW YORK (AP) — A federal advisory panel has recommended that people 75 and older and essential workers like firefighters, teachers and grocery store workers be put next in line for COVID-19 shots as a second vaccine began rolling out to hospitals.

The developments came as a desperately needed boost as the nation works to bring the coronavirus pandemic under control.

The U.S. is trying to ramp up a vaccination program that only began in the last week.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says initial shots have gone so far to about 556,000 Americans.

Trucks left the Olive Branch, Mississippi, factory, near Memphis, Tennessee, with the vaccine developed by Moderna Inc. and the National Institutes of Health. The much-needed shots are expected to be given starting Monday.

Enter your number to get our free mobile app

Wow Your Family With These Homemade Christmas Tags