President Donald Trump said that the US will produce 100 million Covid-19 vaccine doses before the year ends.
He added that there will be enough Covid-19 vaccine doses for Americans by April.
“Hundreds of millions of doses will be available every month, and we expect to have enough vaccines for every American by April, and again I’ll say even at that later stage, the delivery will go as fast as it comes,” Trump said at a White House press briefing.
Trump’s prediction does not mirror the statement of the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Robert Redfield previously said that the US would not vaccinate the public until November or December at the earliest. He also noted that Covid-19 vaccine doses would be limited initially.
Moreover, a vaccine will not be available to the public until the summer or early fall of next year.
“If you’re asking me when is it going to be generally available to the American public so we can begin to take advantage of vaccine to get back to our regular life, I think we’re probably looking at third … late second quarter, third quarter 2021,” he told the US Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies on Wednesday.
According to the president, “massive amounts” of the vaccine “will be delivered through our great military.”
“We are again very advanced on the vaccine, we think that sometime in the very near future we’ll have it,” Trump said. “We’re … I would say, I think I can say, years ahead of schedule what it would be if it were an administration other than this one,” he added.
Trump’s statements came two days after he said the US government could begin distributing vaccines as early as October. He thinks that Redfield was mistaken when he said that the vaccine would not be available until next summer or early fall.
“I think he made a mistake when he said that. It’s just incorrect information, and I called him, and he didn’t tell me that, and I think he got the message maybe confused, maybe it was stated incorrectly,” Trump said Wednesday. “We’re ready to go immediately as the vaccine is announced, and it could be announced in October, it could be announced a little bit after October but once we go we’re ready.”
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says it would only authorize a Covid-19 vaccine that is safe and at least 50% effective.
“We all want a vaccine tomorrow. That’s unrealistic. And we all want a vaccine that’s 100% effective. Again, unrealistic,” said Dr. Stephen Hahn, the agency’s commissioner, during an interview with Dr. Howard Bauchner of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
“But we said 50%, and the reason was because we felt that that was a reasonable floor given the pandemic,” Hahn said.
He explained that requiring a minimum of 50% effectiveness for any Covid-19 vaccine provided guidance for manufacturers on designing their clinical trials.
The vaccine candidates from Moderna and Pfizer have entered their phase three trials earlier this week. The companies aim to register about 30,000 participants to prove the safety and effectiveness of the coronavirus vaccines in a large population.