President Donald Trump sets goal of developing COVID-19 vaccine by end of the year

President Donald Trump to give update on US effort in developing COVID-19 vaccine
Posted at 9:09 AM, May 15, 2020

White House health officials reiterated their goal to deliver millions of doses of a coronavirus vaccine by the end of 2020 on Friday.

President Donald Trump laid out plans for his administration's "Operation Warp Speed," in which he described a plan to have a vaccine developed by the end of the year.

Trump's comments were consistent with those by Dr. Anthony Fauci, who, on Tuesday said that a handful of vaccines were in testing phases — one of which could potentially be ready for production by the fall.

Trump said Friday that vaccine candidates would be mass-produced before final approval is granted, meaning that a large number of doses will be available for delivery soon after approval — either by traditional means or emergency use.

When asked which states would get first priority for delivery, Trump said it "made sense" that the hardest-hit states would be the first to receive the vaccine.

He also added that the goal was for the vaccine to be affordable, saying that the "last thing anyone looking for is profit."

The United States isn't the only country working toward a vaccine. When asked specifically if the U.S. would have access to a vaccine if China developed a vaccine first, Trump said. "I would say the answer to that would be yes" — despite the current cold relationship between the two countries.

In Tuesday's hearing, Fauci also said that officials at the National Institutes of Health are "moving quickly" in their process to develop a vaccine, and could know by the "fall or early winter" if their will be effective.