When will COVID-19 vaccines be generally available in the U.S.?
By Carl O'Donnell and Michael Erman (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump and the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) this week disagreed about when a COVID-19 vaccine would become widely available. Trump said on Friday that enough vaccine would be available for every American by April, while the CDC director said vaccines were likely to reach the general public around mid-2021, an assessment more in line with most experts
COVID-19 vaccines be generally available in the U.S.?" src="https://images.firstpost.com/wp-content/uploads/reuters/09-2020/19/2020-09-18T033043Z_1_LYNXMPEG8H06V_RTROPTP_2_HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS-VACCINES-LIABILITY.jpg" alt="When will COVID19 vaccines be generally available in the US" width="300" height="225" />
By Carl O'Donnell and Michael Erman
(Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump and the head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) this week disagreed about when a COVID-19 vaccine would become widely available. Trump said on Friday that enough vaccine would be available for every American by April, while the CDC director said vaccines were likely to reach the general public around mid-2021, an assessment more in line with most experts.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR A VACCINE TO BE GENERALLY AVAILABLE?
General availability is when every American who wants the vaccine can get it. There are currently no COVID-19 vaccines approved by U.S. regulators, although a handful are in late-stage trials to prove they are safe and effective.
Experts estimate that at least 70% of roughly 330 million Americans would need to be immune through a vaccine or prior infection to achieve what is known as herd immunity, which occurs when enough people are immune to prevent the spread of the virus to those unable to get a vaccine.
HOW LONG BEFORE VACCINE PRODUCTION IS FULLY RAMPED UP?
Most vaccines in development will require two doses per person.
The CDC anticipates that 35 million to 45 million doses of vaccines from the first two companies to receive authorization will be available in the United States by the end of this year. The current front runners are Pfizer Inc
Drugmakers have been more ambitious with their calculations. AstraZeneca Plc
Obtaining enough doses to inoculate everyone in the United States will likely take until later in 2021. CDC Director Robert Redfield told a congressional hearing on Wednesday that vaccines may not be widely available to everyone in the United States until the second or third quarter of next year.
WHO WOULD GET AN APPROVED VACCINE FIRST?
The CDC decision will likely broadly follow recommendations from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. [L1N2FY1CX] The CDC has said the earliest inoculations may go to healthcare workers, people at increased risk for severe COVID-19 , and essential workers.
It is unclear when a vaccine will be available for children as major drugmakers have yet to include them in late-stage trials. Pfizer and BioNTech have filed with regulators seeking to start recruiting volunteers as young as 16 for vaccine studies.
WHICH COMPANIES WILL LIKELY ROLL OUT A VACCINE QUICKLY?
Pfizer has said it could have compelling evidence that its vaccine works by the end of October. Moderna says it could have similar evidence in November. The vaccines would first need to be approved or authorized for emergency use by U.S. regulators.
Drugmakers have already started manufacturing supplies of their vaccine candidates to be ready as soon as they get the go ahead. The U.S. Department of Defense and the CDC plan to start distribution of vaccines within 24 hours of regulatory authorization.
Several drugmakers including Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson
(Reporting by Carl O'Donnell and Michael Erman in New York; additional reporting by Caroline Humer; editing by Peter Henderson, Bill Berkrot and Daniel Wallis)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.