Several COVID-19 vaccine developers, including Pfizer Inc, Johnson & Johnson, and Moderna Inc, plan to issue a public pledge not to seek government approval until their vaccine candidates are proven to be safe and effective, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.
According to the Journal report citing a draft joint statement that is still being finalized, companies would commit to adhering to high scientific and ethical standards in the conduct of clinical studies and their manufacturing processes.
Businesses could issue a pledge as early as next week, the report added, citing two people familiar with the matter.
The news comes amid growing concerns that political pressure ahead of the Nov. 3 election could weigh on the safety and effectiveness of a potential vaccine against respiratory disease.
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said on Thursday that there is no political pressure on the regulator (American Health Officer) to approve a vaccine quickly.
The CEO of Merck & Co. said on Thursday at an event hosted by the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations: “We all know we must act urgently in the face of the pandemic, but under no circumstances will we sacrifice safety.”
Pfizer CEO Burla said on the same forum that the company will never submit vaccines for approval unless they are safe and effective. He also said that Pfizer has no political pressure to speed up the release of vaccines.
AstraZeneca Plc, Pfizer, and Moderna are among the most advanced in the race to develop vaccines to prevent or limit the severity of COVID-19 infection, with their candidates in advanced clinical trials.