President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden on Trump’s refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power: “What country are we in?” Romney: “Unthinkable and unacceptable” not to commit to a peaceful transfer of power Two Louisville police officers shot dead amid protests from Breonna Taylor’s grand jury MORE The need for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to issue stricter standards for emergency approval of a coronavirus vaccine was questioned on Wednesday. The move is “political”
“We’re looking at this. That has to be approved by the White House. We can approve it or not. That sounds like a political move, ”Trump told reporters at a White House briefing when asked if he would agree to the FDA’s plan to publish the new guidelines, reported by the Washington Post earlier this week.
Trump went on to say that the standards would cause unnecessary delays in the delivery of a potential vaccine. Several companies are currently in clinical trials for vaccine candidates.
“Why should [companies] Do you need to add a lot of length to the process? We want people not to get sick. The vaccine is very important, “Trump said, adding,” I think this was a political move more than anything. ”
The Post reported Tuesday that the guidelines require a median of two months of data on vaccine clinical trial participants to ensure there is enough time to assess the safety of vaccine candidates. The new guidelines, designed to increase public confidence and transparency in the vaccination process, would make it more difficult to have a vaccine released for distribution before election day.
When asked if his administration needed to improve confidence in the vaccine, Trump said he had “tremendous confidence” in companies testing the vaccines.
“I have great faith in these massive companies that are so well organized about what they did with the tests,” Trump said.
“I see no reason why it should be delayed any further,” Trump said, adding that delaying a vaccine by a few weeks could cost lives due to the coronavirus.
Trump has predicted a vaccine could be ready by October and publicly pressured the FDA to start the regulatory process. Democrats have raised concerns about political pressure in the vaccine race.
Senior health officials appeared before a Senate panel Wednesday, trying to reassure Americans who were skeptical about the politicization of a vaccine.
Trump has repeatedly broken with leading health officials about public health guidelines and his assessments of the virus threat.
Last week, Trump questioned CDC Director Robert Redfield’s prediction that a potential vaccine would not be available to the public until the end of the second or third quarter of 2021. Trump insisted that Redfield made a “mistake” and was “confused”. by questioning at a congressional hearing.
An FDA spokesman declined to comment when asked about Trump’s remarks.