‘Around this time’: Trump says US may have coronavirus vaccine by 2020 election

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Donald Trump has suggested that a coronavirus vaccine could possibly be ready for the market ahead of the November presidential election – even though his own White House and leading health experts have said it is a highly unlikely scenario.

The president was asked on Thursday whether he thought a vaccine would be ready before election day during an interview with Geraldo Rivera.

“I think in some cases yes possible before,” Mr. Trump said. “But around then. “

Mr Trump claimed that a vaccine against Covid-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, could be ready “earlier than the end of the year” on the radio show, adding: “It could be a lot earlier “.

The president’s claims were in stark contrast to the recent reality check that many health experts have delivered in recent weeks regarding a timeline for multiple vaccine studies and trials taking place across the country.

Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as well as a member of the White House Coronavirus Response Task Force, said in an interview that a vaccination would not be available before “several months” in 2021.

“I think that at the dawn of 2021, several months later, you would have [a] vaccine that would be widely available in the United States, ”said the country’s leading infectious disease specialist Washington Post Bob Costa.

Dr Fauci also told the Post Live event that he remained “a little skeptical” about the possibility of a publicly available vaccination before the end of the year, adding: “But, you know … everything is possible.”

Experts, meanwhile, have spoken out against the idea of ​​rushing a vaccine to the market before it can be considered safe enough. Some fear the president will push a vaccine into the market before it has been deemed safe enough for public use.

“There are a lot of people inside this process who are very worried about whether the administration is going to get their hands in the Warp Speed ​​bucket, pull out one or two or three vaccines and say, ‘We’ve tested on a few. thousands of people, it sounds safe, and now we’re going to deploy it. Dr. Paul A. Offit, member of the Vaccine Advisory Board for the Food and Drug Administration, told New York Times. “They are really worried about this, and they should be.”

The president previously sought to reassure the public that a vaccine would be available both quickly and safely through the efforts of his administration.

At a White House press conference earlier this week, the president told reporters, “We are balancing speed and security.”

“We are on the verge of having a vaccine available this year, maybe well before the end of the year,” he added, “and we are mass producing the most promising candidates in advance. in order to be ready immediately. after approval. “

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