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US Fact check: COVID-19 vaccine won't be ready in weeks, nor mandatory

18:51  24 october  2020
18:51  24 october  2020 Source:   usatoday.com

Protecting the profits of a few could prevent vaccine access for all

  Protecting the profits of a few could prevent vaccine access for all India and South Africa have put forward a novel proposal to replace our current competition-driven approach with cooperation. At a meeting on Oct. 15, they will be asking the World Trade Organization (WTO) to temporarily relax its rules to allow for more international collaboration in the manufacture of the vaccines and medicines - even without authorization from the companies that created them. Theirs is an ambitious gambit, but one that deserves support. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.

The claim: COVID-19 vaccine will be ready in weeks, and the government will force everyone to get it

The global effort to develop a COVID-19 vaccine has been a priority since the coronavirus pandemic started. Seven months into the U.S. outbreak, vaccine candidates are facing skepticism by some in the general public and various elected officials.

Leading health officials, such as Dr. Anthony Fauci, have maintained that a vaccine likely won't be widely available until mid-2021. Meanwhile, President Donald Trump has promised a vaccine before Election Day, prompting the Democratic vice presidential candidate Kamala Harris to accuse Trump of politicizing the vaccine and to question its safety, noting that she would take it only if the health experts said it was safe.

Kremlin dismisses vaccine disinformation campaign accusations as 'circus'

  Kremlin dismisses vaccine disinformation campaign accusations as 'circus' Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov dismissed the reaction of the UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to the Times report saying that Russia is engaging in a disinformation campaign to discredit the Oxford University coronavirus vaccine in an effort to promote its own vaccine Sputnik V, developed by the Gamaleya Institute. "Commenting on the accusations against Russia is getting more and more circus-like," Peskov said in a conference call with reporters Friday. "Russia is not misinforming anyone, Russia proudly talks about its successes and Russia shares its successes regarding the first ever registered [coronavirus] vaccine in the world.

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The effectiveness and safety of a COVID-19 vaccine is not the only thing people are worried about. Vaccine conspiracy theories that originated in anti-vaxxer communities have thrived anew in the COVID-19 era, including claims that the vaccine would implant microchips or that it will be mandatory for every American.

A post from from Before It's News, a website that allows anyone to contribute, — which was shared 38,00 times as of Oct. 15 — furthers the conspiracy theory of a mandatory vaccine, with a headline reading, "The Government Has Released Their Initial Plans to Force a Vaccine on Everyone."

The post also says, "Three potential vaccines are currently in Stage 3 trials in the United States and could be ready in weeks," citing Trump.

Vaccine storage demands could leave 3B people in virus cold

  Vaccine storage demands could leave 3B people in virus cold GAMPELA, Burkina Faso (AP) — From factory to syringe, the world’s most promising coronavirus vaccine candidates need nonstop sterile refrigeration to work. But despite great strides in equipping developing countries to maintain the vaccine “cold chain,” nearly 3 billion of the world's 7.8 billion people live in places with insufficient temperature-controlled storage for an immunization campaign to bring COVID-19 under control. The result: PoorBut despite great strides in equipping developing countries to maintain the vaccine “cold chain,” nearly 3 billion of the world's 7.8 billion people live in places with insufficient temperature-controlled storage for an immunization campaign to bring COVID-19 under control.

USA TODAY reached out to the site's Facebook page for comment.

We'll look at the two claims here: Will a vaccine be mandatory? And, what does the development and distribution timeline really look like?

Will a vaccine be ready in weeks?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the general cycle for the development of a new vaccine has six stages: exploratory stage, pre-clinical stage, clinical development, regulatory review and approval, manufacturing and quality control.

The global prioritization of finding a COVID-19 vaccine has shortened the timeline of its development, which for a regular vaccine would usually take years. However, vaccine developers and institutions like the CDC are following existing protocols to ensure the vaccine's safety and effectiveness.

As of Oct. 15, according to the World Health Organization, 42 vaccine candidates are in clinical evaluations and 156 are in preclinical evaluations.

USA TODAY's experts say securing a COVID vaccine in record time could be easy. Distributing it won't be.

  USA TODAY's experts say securing a COVID vaccine in record time could be easy. Distributing it won't be. Our panel of experts expect at least one COVID-19 vaccine will be approved in the coming months. Then things could really get complicated.Overall, hopefulness was the theme of USA TODAY's vaccine panel this month. After five months, the panel's countdown clock to a widely available vaccine skipped forward another hour, to 8 a.m.

a woman talking on a cell phone: 16-year-old Katelyn Evans gets the first of two shots as part of a trial testing Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine in minors. © Cincinnati Children's Hospital 16-year-old Katelyn Evans gets the first of two shots as part of a trial testing Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine in minors.

The post from Before It's News cites a Sept. 15 comment from Trump where he said a vaccine could be ready in a "matter of weeks." On Oct. 5, Trump said vaccines would be ready "momentarily." However, scientists disagree.

On Sept. 16, Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the CDC, said that while an effective vaccine could be developed before the end of this year, it won't be available to the general public until the second or third quarter of 2021.

Will a COVID-19 vaccine be mandatory?

Speculation about mandatory vaccinations for COVID-19 started spreading on social media from the moment scientists began talks about developing a vaccine.

There is no evidence to support the claim that a COVID-19 vaccine will be mandatory for the entire population.

The post in question cites a COVID-19 vaccine interim playbook from the CDC, which was created in partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Defense. The post misinterprets and misrepresents the content of the playbook, which does not state that everyone will be required to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

FDA scientists, outside experts take up Covid vaccine questions in meeting

  FDA scientists, outside experts take up Covid vaccine questions in meeting The meeting offers insights into the FDA's vaccine approval process.The Food and Drug Administration may have to decide by year’s end whether to allow use of the first vaccines against the coronavirus. Thursday, a federal advisory committee began pulling back the curtain on that decision process, debating whether the guidelines FDA has set for vaccine developers are rigorous enough.

The playbook lays out the plan to effectively distribute the vaccine first to health and essential workers and vulnerable groups before increasing access to the general public.

At an August town hall hosted by Healthline, Fauci said the coronavirus vaccine won't be mandatory in the United States, adding that people have a right to refuse it.

“I don’t think you’ll ever see a mandating of vaccine, particularly for the general public," Fauci said.

Fauci also said some industries may mandate the vaccine for employees, such as how the National Institutes of Health mandates the flu vaccine for its workers. That also is in the playbook.

According to the CDC, "State laws establish vaccination requirements for school children ... . All states provide medical exemptions, and some state laws also offer exemptions for religious and/or philosophical reasons."

Additionally, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration took the position that employers can require staff to take vaccines, like the flu vaccination.

In general, employers can mandate vaccines for their staff. However, according to the National Law Review, this practice does have limitations and is not always recommended.

Like the exemptions that exist for school vaccine requirements, similar exemptions can also be applied to workers who have a reasonable belief that a medical condition may result in illness or death, according to OSHA.

Trust and transparency are necessary to make COVID-19 vaccine successful

  Trust and transparency are necessary to make COVID-19 vaccine successful The impending election, the stock market, and the yearning for a return to normalcy must not distort the decision on whether to approve a vaccine. Only science and rigorous testing can bring an end to this pandemic — and then only if the public can trust in the result. Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, a Democrat from Illinois, is Chairman of the House Oversight Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy.

“If someone refuses the vaccine in the general public, then there’s nothing you can do about that,” Fauci said. “You cannot force someone to take a vaccine.”

Our rating: False

The claims in the post have been rated FALSE. The claim that a vaccine will be ready within weeks, while stated by the president, has been consistently contradicted by public health officials who say a vaccine likely won't be ready by Election Day, nor would it be available to the general public before the middle of 2021. There is also no evidence to support the claim that the coronavirus vaccine will be mandatory for the general public.

Our fact check sources:

  • Health Feedback, COVID-19 vaccines are not expected to be available for the public within several months, contrary to viral claim on social media
  • USA Today, Sept. 4, 2020, Exclusive: Two-thirds of Americans say they won't get COVID-19 vaccine when it's first available, USA TODAY/Suffolk Poll shows
  • World Health Organization, Oct. 2, 2020, Draft landscape of COVID-19 candidate vaccines
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Vaccine Testing and the Approval Process
  • The Guardian, Oct. 7, Covid vaccine tracker: When will a coronavirus vaccine be ready?
  • USA Today, Oct. 5, 2020, President Donald Trump says COVID-19 vaccines are coming 'momentarily.' Scientists say they're not
  • CDC, Sept. 16, 2020, COVID-19 Vaccination Program Interim Playbook for

    Jurisdiction Operations

  • Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Defense, From the Factory to the Frontlines, The Operation Warp Speed Strategy for Distributing a COVID-19 Vaccine
  • C-Span, Aug. 19, 2020, Dr. Fauci Discusses the Pandemic with George Washington University
  • Web MD, Aug. 20, 2020, COVID-19 Vaccine Likely Won’t Be Mandatory
  • The New York Times, Oct. 7, 2020, Coronavirus Vaccine Tracker

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Our fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: COVID-19 vaccine won't be ready in weeks, nor mandatory

Do you trust FDA on COVID-19 vaccines? States and a Black medical group form review boards for second opinion .
Five states and an Black medical group say they’ll conduct independent verification of any COVID-19 vaccines that are approved by FDA.These review panels, which began popping up last month, are meant to instill public confidence and counter the political pall cast over COVID-19 vaccine development and approval. In recent weeks, faith has improved in the FDA's commitment to base COVID-19 vaccines decisions in science, but the growing number of oversight groups seek to add another layer of trust.

usr: 4
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