Some 30,000 volunteers in 70 U.S. locations were given a shot Monday, July 27, 2020, as part of the first round of what will become the world’s largest COVID-19 vaccine tests.

According to Associated Press reporter Lauran Neergaard, “volunteers won’t know if they’re getting the real shot or a dummy version. After two doses, scientists will closely track which group experiences more infections as they go about their daily routines, especially in areas where the virus is spreading unchecked.”

The same treatment will be administered to sets of 30,000 U.S. volunteers who will get (respectively) Oxford University (AstraZeneca), Johnson & Johnson and Novavax versions of the vaccine between now and October.

The story indicates that hundreds of millions of doses of the vaccine are being stockpiled by the government.

According to Sarah Turner, spokesperson for the Barron County Department of Health and Human Services, “once (a vaccine) becomes available, we believe we will have vaccines available for mass clinics” in Barron County.

According to AP, “several other vaccines made by China and by Britain’s Oxford University began smaller final-stage tests in Brazil and other hard-hit countries” during July.

“But the U.S. requires its own tests of any vaccine that might be used in (this) country,” the story added. The U.S. sets a high bar for the tests.

“Every month through fall, the government-funded COVID-19 Prevention Network will roll out a new study of a leading candidate -- each one with 30,000 newly recruited volunteers.”

An online appeal for volunteers received more than 150,000 responses earlier this year, AP noted.