(NBC News) - Just days before Christmas and with COVID-19 cases threatening to overwhelm hospitals, health officials are issuing a desperate plea for people to stay home and stay well.
Experts at the National Institutes of Health on Tuesday received the vaccine they had a hand in developing.
"I want to encourage everyone who has opportunity, get vaccinated so we can have a veil of protection over this country that would end this pandemic," Dr. Anthony Fauci said as he received his shot.
Six million doses of the Moderna vaccine now rolling out, joining Pfizer's on the front lines.
Health experts believe the vaccines will protect against a new, more infectious strain of COVID-19 spreading in the United Kingdom.
Several airlines now requiring negative tests from passengers there headed to New York.
Despite pleas to avoid holiday travel, AAA predicts nearly 85 million plan to make a trip.
Over the past four days TSA checkpoints have screened on average more than a million passengers per day.
Read more: http://nbcnews.to/2KSsQDt