Fauci addresses concerns about speed of coronavirus vaccine development

At a coronavirus task force briefing on Thursday, Dr. Anthony Fauci tried to allay fears some people have that the speed at which potential coronavirus vaccines were being developed may have compromised their safety. “The process of the speed did not compromise, at all, safety, nor did it compromise scientific integrity,” Fauci said.

Video Transcript

ANTHONY FAUCI: The question is what about how that is going to be rolled out. I use the word efficacious. That means what happens in a clinical trial. The word effective means is what the ultimate impact of that vaccine is going to be on society, and the only way you can get an effective program is when people take the vaccine, and we're going to be talking to you about that.

And I hear a lot now when we made these announcements this past Monday and then two Mondays ago about some reticence of people. Well, did you rush this? Was this too fast? Is it really safe, and is it really efficacious?

The process of the speed did not compromise at all safety, nor did it compromise scientific integrity. It was a reflection of the extraordinary scientific advances in these types of vaccines which allowed us to do things in months that actually took years before. So I really want to settle that concern that people have about that.

What about the decision of the data? Who looked at the data? Was that some force that was maybe trying to put something over on you? No. It was actually an independent body of people who have no allegiance to anyone-- not to the administration, not to me, not to the companies-- that looked at the data and deemed it to be sound. Now that data will be examined very carefully by the FDA who, together with a advisory committee, the Vaccine and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee or VRBPAC, are going to look at that before the FDA makes the decision about putting this forth for an emergency-use authorization or, ultimately, for a license.

So we need to put to rest any concept that this was rushed in an inappropriate way. This is really solid.