Dr Amir Khan discusses ‘new strain’ of Coronavirus
The President-elect told reporters in Wilmington, Delaware, he wants to demonstrate the safety of the coronavirus vaccine. The US Food and Drug Administration approved the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine candidate for widespread administration last week, after previously allowing it for emergency use. It comes as the US has seen a massive spike in cases and deaths from the virus as the Christmas season approaches.
Mr Biden, speaking to reporters, reiterated his commitment to a public vaccination.
He said: “I don’t want to get ahead of the line, but I want to make sure we demonstrate to the American people that it is safe to take.
“When I do it, I’ll do it publicly, so you can all witness my getting it done.”
People familiar with the President-elect’s plans also claim he will likely receive the Pfizer jab next week.
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Earlier this month, Mr Biden told CNN he would be happy to receive a vaccine for coronavirus in public to demonstrate confidence.
But he said he would only take the jab once Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease, said it was safe.
Kamala Harris, Mr Biden’s Vice President-elect, also said to CNN she would take the vaccine in public.
Dr Fauci said on Tuesday he wants the paid to be vaccinated “as soon as we possibly can”.
Former Presidents Barack Obama, George W Bush and Bill Clinton have also pledged to take the vaccine in public.
Current President Donald Trump however will not take the vaccine until it is recommended by a medical team, according to a White House officials.
They told CNN the outgoing President is still benefiting from an antibody cocktail he received while hospitalised with the virus in October, and will likely take the jab once the effect wear off.
Vice President Mike Pence will take the vaccine on Friday, with the official set to receive the jab at the White House in front of cameras.
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Since the FDA approved the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine, Dr Fauci has been on a charm offensive urging American’s to take the jab.
He stressed to skeptics that if 75 percent to 85 percent of American’s take the vaccine, the US can begin returning to normal life by autumn in 2021.
Dr Fauci said: “So if we can get the overwhelming proportion of the population vaccinated by let’s say the end of the second, the beginning of the third quarter – by the time we get into mid-fall of 2021, we can be approaching some level of normality.”
The infectious diseases expert also spoke to the National Urban League to calm fears in the African American community over historic racism in US medicine, and said: “So, the first thing you might want to say to my African American brothers and sisters is that the vaccine that you’re going to be taking was developed by an African American woman. And that is just a fact.”
America has seen a spike in coronavirus cases and deaths in recent weeks, with yesterday seeing a further 204,281 cases and 1,754 deaths.
In total, the US has recorded 16,245,576 cases and 298,594 deaths, the highest figures for any country, according to the World Health Organisation.
Tuesday saw the FDA confirm Modern’s vaccine candidate was safe and effective in developing immunisation to coronavirus.
Moderna’s jab could be approved by the FDA for emergency use as early as Monday, but will only be used on adults as testing has not been carried out on teenagers and children.
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