President Donald Trump on Wednesday, July 22, said he is “absolutely” willing to be the first person to take a CCP Virus (coronavirus) vaccine if it is available.
The president also admitted the dilemma he will be facing regarding whether he should be the first to take the vaccine when asked by Fox News medical contributor Dr. Marc Siegel.
“Well, you know the way it works. If I’m the first one they’ll say ‘he’s so selfish. He wanted to get the vaccine first. Then other people would say ‘Hey, that’s a very brave thing to do,’” the president told Siegel. “I would absolutely, if they wanted me to and thought it was right, I’d take it first or I’d take it last.”
The president’s comments came after BioNTech and pharmaceutical company Pfizer, which is jointly developing four potential vaccines, earlier in the day announced that under a $1.95 billion deal with the federal government, it will give the United States 100 million doses of its potential vaccine if it proves safe and effective. The United States can buy 500 million additional doses if needed.
“Hopefully the approval process will go very quickly, and we think we have a winner there. We also think we have other companies right behind that are doing very well on the vaccines, long ahead of schedule,” President Trump told reporters at the White House on Wednesday.
“This is another crucial step and our effort to develop, manufacture, and distribute a vaccine in record-breaking time, really a very small fraction of the time based on previous schedules,” he continued.
If the vaccine is approved as safe and effective in a large phase three trial, Pfizer will begin to deliver doses to locations across the nation at the government’s direction, according to Health and Human Services (HHS).
Americans won’t have to pay for the vaccine, HHS said. The companies previously said they expected to begin a large trial on 30,000 participants later this month.
“Expanding Operation Warp Speed’s diverse portfolio by adding a vaccine from Pfizer and BioNTech increases the odds that we will have a safe, effective vaccine as soon as the end of this year,” HHS Secretary Alex Azar said. “Depending on success in clinical trials, today’s agreement will enable the delivery of approximately 100 million doses of this vaccine to the American people.”