‘Safe & effective’ over ‘first’: US throws shade at Russia’s first-to-market Covid-19 vaccine
“The point is not to be first with a vaccine, the point is to have a vaccine that is safe and effective for the American people and the people of the world,” US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar told ABC on Tuesday, demanding “transparent” phase-three test data.
Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb was more pointed in his criticism of Russia’s coronavirus jab, suggesting that “today’s news that they ‘approved’ a vaccine on the equivalent of phase-one data may be another effort to stoke doubts [in US vaccine development] or goad [the] US into forcing early action on our vaccines” in a Tuesday tweet.
The irony of US health officials criticizing the speed of Russia’s vaccine development appeared lost on the pair. The Trump administration’s own vaccine development program, called Operation Warp Speed, has been criticized even by the country’s most fervent vaccine boosters for its “unsafe” timeline, which has contracted from an ambitious 18-month projected schedule to “maybe before the election.”
The US and UK have both ordered millions of doses of a barely-tested, unproven vaccine developed by Oxford University in partnership with AstraZeneca, with HHS officials stating they hope to receive the first doses as early as October. While the shot has so far proven incapable of protecting monkeys from the virus, hope springs eternal. Another vaccine candidate, from newcomer Moderna, has triggered serious side effects in a large portion of test subjects but has nevertheless been hyped as a potential savior. The FDA hopes to approve a vaccine by December.Also on rt.com Putin says Russia’s Health Ministry has approved world’s FIRST Covid-19 vaccine, his own daughter has been vaccinated
Russia became the first country to grant regulatory approval to a vaccine for the novel coronavirus on Tuesday, as President Vladimir Putin announced that the formula developed at the state-run Gamaleya Research Institute had “passed all the needed checks” and was ready to be distributed to health workers.
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