WASHINGTON D.C. (WCMH) — The nation’s top disease doctors say they are still optimistic that a COVID-19 vaccine will happen by the end of this year or early 2021.
But those doctors also warned Congress that in the meantime too many Americans are still not doing enough to protect themselves and others from the coronavirus.
Dr. Anthony Fauci returned to Capitol Hill on Friday with a message of hope for lawmakers.
“We feel cautiously optimistic that we will have a vaccine by the end of this year and as we go into 2021,” Dr. Fauci said.
Indiana republican representative Jackie Walorski asked if a vaccine happens, then who gets it and when.
“Is it safe to say that every American will be able to get a vaccine once its approved,” Rep. Walorski asked.
“Within a reasonable period of time. The plans now allow for any american who needs a vaccine to get it,” Dr. Fauci responded.
Illinois democratic representative Bill Foster, a former physicist, praised efforts to create a vaccine with new MRNA technology, which gives protection with only a small dose of vaccine.
“This one-liter bottle, if it were full of MRNA vaccine, would contain over 30 million doses,” Foster said.
But Ohio republican representative Jim Jordan was less interested in vaccine progress and more interested in what he called a political double standard.
“No limits to protests, but boy you can’t go to church on Sunday,” Jordan said.
Jordan questioned Dr. Fauci over how states are applying CDC guidelines to fight the virus.
“I’m not favoring anybody over anybody,” Dr. Fauci said. “I’m just making a statement that’s a broad statement that avoid crowds of any type.”
CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said every American has the power to stop the spread.
“The face masks, the social distancing, the hand hygiene, staying smart about gatherings and staying out of crowded bars,” Dr. Redfield said. “If we did those five things, we get the same bang for the buck as shutting down the entire economy.”