Moncef Slaoui: COVID-19 Vaccine Won’t Be Available for Public Until Spring 2021

Moncef Slaoui: COVID-19 Vaccine Won’t Be Available for Public Until Spring 2021

Rabat – The leader of US Operation Warp Speed, Moncef Slaoui, has said that even if a vaccine is approved, the quantities would be “extremely limited” this year.

He estimated that a vaccine will not be widely available to the public until spring 2021.

In the latest development on his team’s race to find a COVID-19 vaccine, Slaoui expressed support for submitting safety data of at least two months to avoid complications and side effects.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has called on COVID-19 vaccine developers to submit safety data covering a period of at least two months in their emergency approval applications to ensure safety for users.

The decision will not help Donald Trump’s aim to earn more support by releasing a vaccine in the lead-up to November’s election.

Moncef Slaoui thinks the request is appropriate.

In an interview with Business Insider on Tuesday, Slaoui said the safety data is “very important.”

The scientist offered his remarks before the FDA released the guidelines later on Tuesday, prompting their politicization.

He said that major side effects from vaccines often happen 40 days after the patient receives the drug.

“Setting a two-month time window of follow-up is a good thing to do,” the Moroccan scientist told Business Insider.

In September, Moncef Slaoui told CNBC that a COVID-19 vaccine would likely be ready by December.

He said the US would first use the vaccine on the elderly and health care workers in January.

The scientist said that the vaccine then would be available for the public at large later in January and in February, March, and April.

The scientist reassured people following the vaccine race that his team’s COVID-19 vaccine development is proceeding “very well.”

Moncef Slaoui has firmly reiterated that the November 3 election date should have no bearing on the COVID-19 vaccine’s development timeline.

He said that he would quit if he faced pressure to issue a vaccine before health authorities deem it safe for the public.

Trump appointed Slaoui to lead Operation Speed Warp in May. 

The scientist earned his post for his prominent portfolio in vaccine development. Moncef Slaoui helped develop over 14 vaccines throughout his career for several diseases, including ebola and malaria.