The top US infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, apologized for making remarks that ridiculed the covid-19 vaccine approval process in the United Kingdom.
The UK has become the first country in the world to approve the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine on Wednesday and is set to distribute the vaccine this weekend.
It defended the rapid approval of the vaccine and said it is safe and effective.
On Wednesday, December 2, 2020, Dr Fauci told Fox News that the UK had not “as carefully reviewed the vaccine as US health regulators. He told CBS News later that the approval had been “rushed” by the UK.
On Wednesday, Dr. June Raine, the head of the UK Medicines Regulator, replied to his comment stating that no corners had been cut” in vetting the vaccine.
She added that preliminary data on vaccine trials dating back to June was reviewed by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
No vaccine would be authorized for supply in the United Kingdom unless the expected safety, quality, and efficacy standards were met.
“no judgment on the way the UK did it”no judgment on the way the UK did it.
On Thursday, Dr. Fauci told the BBC, “I have a great deal of confidence in what the UK does both scientifically and from a regulator standpoint,”
He added: “Our process is one that takes more time than it takes in the UK. And that’s just the reality,” “I did not mean to imply any sloppiness even though it came out that way.”
Dr. Fauci also told CBS News, the BBC’s US affiliate, on Thursday that he would meet with members of the team of President-elect Joe Biden to discuss the response of the incoming administration to the pandemic.
Dr. Fauci had already met with the new chief-of-staff of Mr. Biden, he said.
For more than 30 years, Fauci has led the United States National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIH), covering five presidential transitions.
The remarks of Dr. Fauci come as the US reaches 14 million total Covid-19 infections, with 274,648 fatalities reported.
On Thursday, Prof. Jonathan Van-Tam, UK deputy chief medical officer, told the BBC that he was very confident” in the MHRA.
He said that between the UK regulator and the committee recommending which groups of people are vaccinated first, there was more than “100 years of medical experience”