White House Dep. Chief of Staff says covid-19 vaccine likely available by end of 2020

Could a vaccine soon come to North Carolina?

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - In May President Trump announced Operation Warp Speed, a program aiming to deliver millions of doses of covid-19 vaccine to the United States.

As coronavirus cases are rising in North Carolina, White House Deputy Chief of Staff Dr. John Fleming says a vaccine is right around the corner.

In August, President Trump made a stop in Morrisville North Carolina to get a behind the scenes look at production of a vaccine at the Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnnologies.

“These companies have been manufacturing the vaccine while they are developing it and testing it, so as soon as we get a greenlight on any of them they’re gonna be immediately released because they’re already produced," White House Deputy Chief of Staff and Coronavirus Task Force member Dr. John Fleming said.

Dr. Fleming says four companies are in the lead.

“Both Moderna and Pfizer expect to apply for Emergency Use Authorization as early as next month," he said.

He also said President Trump’s statement during the debate Thursday night, that a vaccine could be ready within weeks, was accurate.

“Yes that’s absolutely accurate," he said. "We expect that the vulnerable such as those in nursing homes to begin getting this vaccine as early as December.”

He says North Carolina will get access at the same time as every other state.

“Within days that we get an approval from the FDA people will be rolling up their sleeve and getting that vaccine," he said. "We’ve already been in the process of manufacturing millions of vials; we’ve set up the supply chain.”

When it comes to varying information regarding the timeline, he said that’s because there are so many different trials.

“You hear different estimates with different timelines and windows but as we get closer we can compress that," he said. "It’s looking like anywhere from late November to early 2021, but it looks like one and maybe even two will be ready by the end of the year.”

When it comes to the safety of a vaccine, he wants to remind people that scientists, not politicians, are deciding when a vaccine is ready for the general public.

Copyright 2020 WBTV. All rights reserved.