While the entire world is eagerly waiting for a cure for the coronavirus, US President Donald Trump on Monday expressed hope that a vaccine to treat the highly-infectious disease might be ready by October this year.
"This could've taken two or three years, and instead it's going to be -- going to be done in a very short period of time," Trump said at a news conference, adding that they "could even have it during the month of October."
A number of public health officials and scientists have expressed serious concerns that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is under pressure from the White House to approve a vaccine before Trump faces re-election on November 3. This could also mean that Americans express unwillingness to receive a shot if they believe the vaccine was rushed to market based on the campaign timetable.
Trump said that the vaccine will be very safe and very effective. "And it'll be delivered very soon. Now, you could have a very big surprise coming up."
Meanwhile, Trump also criticised Joe Biden for his skepticism that the FDA is operating free of political pressure. He called Biden's doubts "political lies."
Ahead of Trump's conference, Biden had said he would heed the advice of scientists about whether to get a coronavirus vaccine if one were to become available before November's presidential election. "I'd want to see what the scientists said," he told reporters. On being asked if he would trust Anthony Fauci and the Food and Drug Administration, Biden said he'd want "full transparency on a vaccine."