An executive decision to prioritize a potentially lifesaving treatment caused the sharemarket to rally off the back of renewed optimism about combating the deadly Asian disease.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) emergency use authorization for a new CCP (Chinese Communist Party) Virus treatment caused several stock market benchmarks to rebound on Aug. 23.
The Oval Office described the authority to use the medical countermeasure as a “truly historic” step that will “save countless lives” and dramatically expand access to the treatment.
“The FDA has issued an emergency use authorization—and that is such a powerful term, emergency use authorization—for a treatment known as convalescent plasma,” President Donald Trump said in a statement. “This is a powerful therapy that transfuses very, very strong antibodies from the blood of recovered patients to help treat patients battling a current infection. It has had an incredible rate of success.”
An emergency use authorization authority empowers the FDA to bolster the nation’s public health protections against chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) threats. The authority aims to achieve this through “facilitating the availability and use of medical countermeasures needed during public health emergencies,” according to the FDA website.
“Under section 564 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, the FDA commissioner may allow unapproved medical products, or unapproved uses of approved medical products, to be used in an emergency to diagnose, treat, or prevent serious or life-threatening diseases or conditions, caused by CBRN threat agents, when there are no adequate, approved, and available alternatives,” the website said.
The Trump administration credited U.S. Secretary for Health and Human Services Alex Azar, FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn, and the entire FDA for performing a task that would typically take three years in just a matter of months.
“I want to thank the FDA—all of the people that have been working very hard on this, it showed tremendous potential,” the president said. “It is only made possible because of Operation Warp Speed that has everybody working together … if we went by the speed levels of past administration, we would be two years, three years behind where we are today.”
He also revealed further medical countermeasures would be announced in the not-too-distant future.
“That includes in vaccines that you will be hearing about very soon, very shortly,” he said. “To deliver treatments and vaccine to save lives, we are removing unnecessary barriers and delays not by cutting corners but by marshaling the full power of the federal government.”