Anthony Fauci says Pfizer vaccine's trial success may boost acceptance

Grant Boone
November 19, 2020

"I would recommend you have an added area of protection", Fauci responded. "It can't wait to the last minute".

AgenciesThe US may begin offering the vaccine to priority groups at the end of December, Fauci said.

The country's top infectious disease expert.

Fauci said, "Of course, Jake, that is obvious".

He said the military could "potentially" play a role in delivering millions of vaccine doses to provincial hubs, but once again brushed off the possibility of invoking the Emergencies Act to help clamp down on the spread of the novel coronavirus. Pfizer has said early data showed its vaccine to be more than 90 percent effective, and Cambridge-based Moderna on Monday reported early results showing 94.5 percent efficacy. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, which Fauci heads, has provided Moderna with research funding and is running the trial testing its vaccine.

"The virus is not going to stop and call a time out while things change".

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On Monday, the USA reported 166,045 new confirmed cases and 995 deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. More than 245,000 Americans have died from COVID-19 and more than 10.9 million infected, with both figures more than in any other country. Total U.S. cases have topped 11.2 million, and deaths have surpassed 247,000.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stressed the country remains in an "incredibly serious" situation where Canadians will need to refocus their efforts until vaccines become widely available.

Fauci said that in the meantime, it's important for people "to be motivated to hang in there a bit longer and double down on the public health measures".

"So, if we get the overwhelming majority of people taking the vaccine, and you have on the one hand an effective vaccine, on the other hand, a high degree of uptake of the vaccine, we could start getting things back to relative normal as we get into the second and third quarter of (2021), where people can start thinking about doing things that were too risky just months ago", Fauci said. That news comes a week after Pfizer revealed its vaccine was similarly effective. He wants everyone to mask up, wash their hands frequently, maintain physical distance, conduct activities outdoors when possible and avoid indoor gatherings.

"I don't think we're there yet".

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