The US Food and Drug Administration will not compromise on the safety of a Covid-19 vaccine, even with the speed with which it must evaluate vaccine candidates, FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn told American Medical Association President Dr. Susan Bailey in an online conversation Monday.
Hahn acknowledged that because of the speed with which the agency is working, some experts have questioned if the FDA will compromise its scientific principles in reviewing clinical trial data.
“Let me assure you that we will not cut corners,” Hahn said. “All of our decisions will continue to be based on good science and the same careful deliberative processes we have always used when reviewing medical products.”
Hahn asked the doctors listening to the conversation to urge patients to take the vaccine once it is approved. He said that he has seen surveys that report a significant part of the public will be reluctant to get a Covid-19 vaccine. A CNN poll in May found one-third of Americans said they would not try to get vaccinated against Covid-19, even if the vaccine is widely available and low cost.
“We hope that you will urge your patients to take an approved vaccine, so that we can seek to establish widespread immunity,” Hahn said.
More context: There are 26 vaccines in human trials around the world with four in the United States. There are also 139 in preclinical trials around the world, according to the World Health Organization.