Trump hopes coronavirus vaccine will be available by end of year

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Briefing the press on the coronavirus efforts in the Rose Garden of the White House, Trump said: “We are looking to get it by the end of the year if we can, maybe before.” — Courtesy photo

WASHINGTON — US President Donald Trump said on Friday that he’s hopeful to have a coronavirus vaccine on the market by the end of the year or shortly thereafter.

Briefing the press on the coronavirus efforts in the Rose Garden of the White House, Trump said: “We are looking to get it by the end of the year if we can, maybe before.”

“We think we are going to have some very good results coming out very quickly,” he added.

Trump announced he would appoint Moncef Slaoui, a former pharmaceutical executive, and four star army general Gustave Perna, to lead "Operation Warp Speed."

“My administration is providing roughly $10 billion to support a medical research effort without parallel,” the president said.

The operation is independent of the existing White House coronavirus task force, which is also shifting its focus toward vaccine development.

Trump added that when a vaccine was ready the military would be enlisted to distribute it — and evoked a spirit of global cooperation.

“We are working together with many different countries, and again we have no ego,” he said.

“Whoever gets it, we think it is great, we are going to work with them and they're going to work with us. If we get it, we'll be working with them.

The initiative is being promoted by White House senior adviser Jared Kushner, and involves officials from the Defense Department and the Department of Health and Human Services.

The administration is aiming to have 300 million doses to distribute to Americans by the end of the year, believing a reliable vaccine is the only way to promote an economic rebound. — Agencies


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