Former director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Tom Frieden, highlighted the importance of trust in the vaccine process on Sunday.
First, experts have to see if vaccines work, and there is encouraging news that some might, Frieden said. Then, it's necessary to make sure the vaccines are safe.
Thirdly, “we have to make sure we get them into people’s arms and that means ensuring that there’s trust, he said.
He said that two crucial things to watch are the US Food and Drug Administration and the CDC’s Public Advisory Committee, describing both as transparent and open to the public.
The FDA determines approval of the vaccine, and the CDC approves who should get it and when, Frieden explained.
“There are no secrets here, it’s very important that we maintain, gain, increase trust in this whole process or people are going to be confused, concerned and they’re not going to take the vaccine,” he said.
When it comes to a timeline for vaccine availability, Frieden said that there may be signals that the vaccine is protective sometime in the fall, and that there may be announcements from companies that they can make large quantities, “but between knowing it’s safe, effective and available, that’s going to be sometime next year, in all likelihood, if we are lucky.”