Dr Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, said on Wednesday that drugmakers would likely have tens of millions of doses of the coronavirus vaccine by the start of next year and more. minus 1 billion by the end of 2021.
Fauci told Reuters there would be no pressure in the United States to speed up approval of a vaccine out of political expediency, despite the November election.
“I’m sure what the White House would like to see, but I haven’t seen any indication of pressure at this point to do anything other than what we’re doing,” he said.
President Trump said this week that a vaccine could potentially be available this fall.
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“We are balancing speed and safety and we are on the verge of having a vaccine this year, possibly well before the end of the year,” Trump said at a White House press briefing . “And we mass-produce the most promising candidates ahead of time so we’re ready when they’re approved. We have our soldiers lined up, it’s logistics, it’s a matter of logistics.
More than 150 potential coronavirus vaccines are in development around the world and at least 27 are in human trials, according to the New York Times.
Fauci endorsed Trump’s assessment that the virus is ‘under control’ – but only in parts of the United States
“We are a great country,” he said. “You can pick some parts of the country that look good and you could say they’re under control; you can pick parts of the country that are on fire, in the sense that I mean you have epidemics that you know you don’t get 70,000 cases a day when nothing is happening. ”
He lamented that young Americans sometimes don’t treat the virus with the same degree of severity as they should. “Young people could get infected and think that in fact it has no impact on them when in fact they are participating in the spread of the epidemic,” Fauci said.
He also stressed that turning mask wearing into a political issue would not help control the epidemic, but said it was a “step in the right direction” to see Trump and Vice President Pence encourage them. people to wear them.
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“I’m very happy now that we see the vice president systematically wearing a mask, with the president tweeting that you should wear masks,” he told Reuters. ” This is a good thing. “