TELLING STORIES, CHANGING THE CONVERSATION

In a race for a coronavirus vaccine, Trump’s medical team considers over 100 candidates

in Crisis & Natural Disasters by

The Trump Administration projects a coronavirus vaccine to be available by early 2021 through efforts that hasten vaccine trials.

At a White House press conference, Donald Trump announced that his administration launched a public-private partnership to quicken plans for a Covid-19 vaccine to start being distributed by January 2021. Named Operation Warp Speed, the initiative aims to “rapidly develop and manufacture a coronavirus vaccine,by the end of the year, said Trump.

We have marshalled the genius of American scientists and researchers from all across government and the private sector, from academia, from everywhere, to vanquish the virus,” Trump continued.

Trump also reported that the FDA has already approved 130 vaccine trials to run, and will manufacture the authorized vaccines in the US to eliminate any delays. Already, Congress approved $10 billion to explicitly go to vaccine development. Included are massive Covid-19 testing efforts. These measures are part of the Trump Administration working to what they are calling “reopening America.” 

Leading the team in developing an inoculation is Dr. Moncef Slaoui. An immunologist who has worked to develop 14 vaccines, Slaoui’s work includes a vaccine that addresses malaria, and another in development that inoculates against Ebola. For three decades, Slaoui worked in developing vaccines for GlaxoSmithKline, a multinational pharmaceutical company.

As the Trump Administration races to distribute a vaccine, Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the leads of the US Coronavirus Task Force and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has become a dissenting voice. He warned that Trump’s push is a “a real risk that you will trigger an outbreak that you may not be able to control which in fact, paradoxically will set you back.” 

Just four weeks ago, Fauci spoke at White House press conferences alongside Trump. Now, he is on the outs with POTUS. Fauci’s comments have not always been congruent with Trump. The infectious disease expert has said that vaccines take up to one year to develop. But, he also contradicted this statement when he announced in April that a vaccine could be available by this fall. 

Last week, Fauci and other leading task force members have placed themselves on a modified quarantine since discovering that a White House staffer tested positive for Covid-19. He now speaks from his home as he teleworks,

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