Will FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn Cave To Political Pressure And Approve A Risky And Hazardous Vaccine?
There is a mad rush to find a vaccine for covid-19. And as the death toll continues to rise in the U.S, some are wondering if FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn will cave to political pressure and approve a risky and hazardous vaccine.
“I think in some cases, yes, possible before, but right around that time,” Trump said on Geraldo Rivera’s radio show when questioned if he thought a vaccine would be ready by Nov. 3.
“We have great companies,” he added. “The rest of the world is also doing vaccines, so let’s see how they do.”
But in a recent op-ed piece Hahn wrote for the Washington Post, he emphasized there is no timeline. He wrote, “The framework in the United States to support a covid-19 vaccine is now in place. Testing is underway and manufacturing capacity is rapidly expanding. But let’s be clear: The development effort must adhere to standards that will ensure any covid-19 vaccine’s safety and effectiveness.”
According to Hahn, there have been large-scale clinical trials and that by this fall, the FDA expects to start identifying which vaccine candidates are truly viable. But that would still be a long way from a vaccine.
Hahn said there is a project called Operation Warp Speed, which operates independently of the FDA as a partnership between HHS and the Defense Department. Operation Warp Speed has been organizing the stockpiling of vials and other equipment necessary for a national immunization program.
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He also warned that he could not “make any predictions about timing of an emergency use or final approval of a covid-19 vaccine.”
Since Hahn is on one page and Trump on another, will the president exert political pressure on vaccine development in a bid to boost his reelection hopes?
This puts Hahn in a sticky situation. As Moguldom Nation founder Jamarlin Martin @JamarlinMartin tweeted: “It’s a decent chance the FDA chief resigns. I wonder what the polling looks like on ‘would you take the first vaccine after the resignation of the FDA Chief?'”
Trump is clear he wants a vaccine fast.
“I’m rushing it. I am. I’m pushing everybody,” Trump told Rivera of the push for a vaccine.