Oct. 16, 2020 — Pfizer won’t apply for emergency authorization of its coronavirus vaccine before the third week in November, the company’s chief executive said in a statement posted to Pfizer’s website on Friday.
The reversal from the company’s previous claims that it would apply for the approval in October is a blow to U.S. President Donald Trump, who repeatedly said that a vaccine would be available before Election Day on Nov. 3, The New York Times reported.
Even though Pfizer could have preliminary data about the vaccine’s effectiveness by the end of October, gathering safety and manufacturing data would take until at least the third week of November, Dr. Albert Bourla said in the statement.
Pfizer’s announcement was welcomed by some scientists.
“This is good, really good,” Dr. Eric Topol, a clinical trial expert at Scripps Research in San Diego, told The Times. He was one of 60 public health officials and other medical experts who sent a letter to Pfizer urging it not to rush its vaccine, The Times reported.
Pfizer is one of four companies with a coronavirus vaccine in late-stage clinical trials in the United States. The others are Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson. Pfizer has given the most optimistic timeline, while the other three have said later this year is more likely.