Coronavirus

Trump’s Ego Cost Americans Vaccine Doses

SK Ashby
Written by SK Ashby

Pfizer was the first pharmaceutical company to release the results of a large scale coronavirus vaccine trial and the first vaccine to be administered to the western public, but the United Stated has secured far fewer doses of it than we're going to need.

Pfizers vaccine is a two dose vaccine, meaning 100 million doses is only enough to vaccine 50 people. And we could have secured far than 100 million doses, but the Trump regime turned down the opportunity to secure as many as 500 million doses.

Asked if the Trump administration had missed a crucial chance to snap up more doses for Americans, a spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Human Services said, “We are confident that we will have 100 million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine as agreed to in our contract, and beyond that, we have five other vaccine candidates.” [...]

The government was in July given the option to request 100 million to 500 million additional doses. But despite repeated warnings from Pfizer officials that demand could vastly outstrip supply and amid urges to pre-order more doses, the Trump administration turned down the offer, according to several people familiar with the discussions.

The New York Times has not reported an explicit reason why the Trump White House turned down Pfizer's offer, but I'm certain that we know why.

Unlike other drug makers, Pfizer did not participate in Trump's "Operation Warp Speed" program. Recent reports told us that the European Union secured doses of Pfizer's vaccine for a lower cost than the United States did and they may have also secured more doses of it because of Trump's ego-driven priorities. The European Union's collective population is significantly larger than the U.S. and they're going to need more doses, but it seems clear that some critical opportunities have been missed.

There may be "five other vaccine candidates," as the Trump regime says, but who can say when each one will be approved, how many doses they'll be able to manufacture, and what other challenges in the supply chain will slow their delivery?

Vaccines are going to trickle out over a long period of time and that's almost certainly going to lead to unequal distribution between the world's rich and poor.