Operation Warp Speed (OWS), the initiative by the United States to bring together government officials and the brightest minds in technology and pharmaceuticals aiming to bring a COVID-19 vaccine by January 2021, showed immense progress this past week.
In the last couple of weeks, Moderna released preliminary results showing its vaccine prototype had 94.5% success rate among participants in preventing contraction of COVID-19. OWS has provided nearly $2 billion in support of the Moderna vaccine research and development plan. The initiative has also vowed to support the manufacturing and distribution of the vaccine if it reaches final approval.
Pfizer also released encouraging news this past week. Their vaccine prototype showed an efficacy rate of 95% and has shown to protect vulnerable individuals such as seniors. While Pfizer did not accept federal funding for the research and development of the vaccine, they have secured $1.95 billion in funding from OWS for its distribution of as many as 100 million doses should the vaccine receive final approval.
The FDA is in the final stages of approving these vaccines. It is anticipated the vaccines will be available by the end of the year. When they are approved, Governor Parsons’ COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan will go into effect. You can learn more about how vaccines available in Missouri will be distributed by going to: https://health.mo.gov/living/healthcondiseases/communicable/novel-coronavirus/pdf/mo-covid-19-vax-plan.pdf.