With the news of Pfizer's and BioNTech's 90 percent effective coronavirus vaccine currently in development, infectious diseases expert Dr. Anthony Fauci expects the company will soon be requesting an emergency use authorization from the FDA. If that goes smoothly, he said that "we may have doses we're able to give to people by the end of November, the beginning of December."
“Again you have to go through the hoops of making sure all the is are dotted and all the t's are crossed, about the safety and the regulatory aspects of it," Fauci told CNN's Wolf Blitzer. "But we would be giving vaccine to people very likely before the end of this year. That is good news."
Health care providers, people with underlying comorbidities, and the elderly will be prioritized for the first doses, he explained.
"I trust Pfizer; I trust the FDA," Fauci added in a conversation with Jake Tapper. "These are colleagues of mine for decades — career scientists."
The average American, he said, should have access to a vaccine by April 2021. Although he said that was just a "guestimate."
Fauci and the CNN anchors all agreed that this is "good news." But to many Trump supporters it's suspicious timing. Some people are livid that these leading health professionals waited to tell us about this breakthrough so soon after the presidential election.
Less than 1-week after the election, Dr. Anthony Fauci says that news of the Pfizer vaccine means that people could start getting vaccines this month, adds: “We would be giving vaccine to people very likely before the end of this year.” pic.twitter.com/dKYPRnD9ho— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) November 9, 2020
Wait, the vaccine was known to be successful weeks ago?? Fauci, Biden, media mocked Trump at this time for saying vaccine was close. The Oct announcement just happened to be delayed AFTER the election? We need answers from corporate & government officials. https://t.co/zPRSZZeWfX pic.twitter.com/c3grJL7dJ2— Jim DeMint (@JimDeMint) November 9, 2020
Back in September, we reported on how President Trump suggested that the vaccine would be ready in time for the election. Dr. Fauci threw cold water on that prediction, but as it turns out POTUS wasn't too far off.
The Trump administration's Operation Warp Speed is a public-private partnership that has been working for months to steer the development, manufacturing, and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. Pfizer tried to distance itself from the program, but this Pfizer press release from July tells a different story:
Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) and BioNTech SE (Nasdaq: BNTX) today announced the execution of an agreement with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Defense to meet the U.S. government’s Operation Warp Speed program goal to begin delivering 300 million doses of a vaccine for COVID-19 in 2021. Under the agreement, the U.S. government will receive 100 million doses of BNT162, the COVID-19 vaccine candidate jointly developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, after Pfizer successfully manufactures and obtains approval or emergency use authorization from U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Fauci expects Pfizer to put in that FDA emergency request "in the next week and a half or so."