Coronavirus vaccine: Pharma cos pledge not to compromise safety

Nine US drugmakers pledge to test the new Coronavirus vaccine well before releasing it to the public. Though they did not rule out an emergency authorization of the vaccine, they have promised to release the vaccine after thoroughly testing it with the help of ‘high quality clinical trials’. They also promised to follow guidance from regulatory agencies like the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

“We believe this pledge will help ensure public confidence in the rigorous scientific and regulatory process by which Covid-19 vaccines are evaluated and may ultimately be approved,” the companies said.

US President Trump has claimed that a new vaccine for Coronavirus may be available before the US goes to polls on November 3, highlighting fears that his administration is ‘trying to speed things up’, potentially undermining the public trust in any vaccine that may be approved before the polls.

Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Moderna are testing their vaccines in last-case clinical trials in the US. Out of the three only Pfizer has said it could apply for emergency approval in October this year, while Moderna and AstraZeneca are hoping to have a vaccine approved by December.

Other companies which were a part of this pledge include BioNTech, a developer partner in Pfizer’s vaccine, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Novavax and Sanofi. The main aim of this pledge is to ensure they do not fall prey to pressure from the political brass to hype the launch of the vaccine before elections.

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