As warned by experts, the promise of a COVID-19 vaccine by election day were exaggerated. The world has entered into a critical period for the coronavirus wherin we once anticipated the fabled Thanksgiving Vaccine. U.S. Coronavirus Task Force Advisor Deborah Birx sternly warns the nation is headed beyond the current state of Western Europe, whose second wave of lock downs is now in full effect.
Meanwhile, the United States awaits the results of today's unprecedented election for the office of the President. Leading up to the eleciton, the Trump administration has made a series of claims and projections for the SARS-CoV-2 vaccines under Operation Warp Speed which some analysts claim were ploys to win relection for Donald Trump.
Trump has all but outright stated the vaccine would be available prior to today, although the language has strongly suggested so. In September, Trump declared "So we're going to have a vaccine very soon, maybe even before a very special date. You know what date I'm talking about." The president toook this a step further just a month earler stating "I think in some cases, yeah, it's possible before [the election]. But right around that time" referring to the COVID-19 vaccine on the Roadwill with Geraldo podcast.
As of today, U.S. election day, not a single company in Operation Warp Speed has filed for approval for their vaccine, let alone accomplished the feat of widespread availability for Americans.
End of The Year
Beyond November, officials in Trump's administration have been slightly more conservative estimating the vaccine could become available by the end of 2020. White House director of strategic communications Alyssa Farah called the November 3rd deadline "arbitrary" yet stated "We're still highly confident we'll have one by the end of the year and be prepared to deploy it to a hundred million Americans."
Others in the administration have pushed the deadline into the new year. This includes HHS Secretary Alex Azar who said in June, "President Trump's vision for a vaccine by January 2021 will be one of the greatest scientific and humanitarian accomplishments in history, and this is the team that can get it done"
This timing is more in line with the projection from Dr. Anthony Fauci, however the NIAID director cautions us to carefully interpret the meaning of "ready." Fauci stated finalized safety results could become available as early as December of 2020, however widespread distribution would be slow at first.
"We will know whether a vaccine is safe and effective by the end of November, beginning of December...The amount of doses that will be available in December will not certainly be enough to vaccinate everybody -- you'll have to wait several months into 2021"
Pfizer October Vaccine
COVIDVax News has been closely following Pfizer, offering a steady potential for October clearance of their lead COVID-19 vaccine, BNT162b2. In Late October, the company announced near completion of their final phase trial recruitment. Since early October, the Pfizer newsroom has been quiet, with the last reporting a "rolling submission" to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) which opens the vaccine candidate to marketing approval, one of the final stages before distribution.
Peter Honig, M.D., Senior Vice President and Head of Worldwide Safety and Regulatory of Pfizer in the same press release stated, “A global crisis the magnitude of COVID-19 has completely transformed the vaccine development and review process....We are making every effort to develop a safe and effective vaccine following the guidance of regulatory agencies and are proud to take this historic step with the European Medicines Agency for our COVID-19 vaccine candidate, BNT162b2.”