Covid-19: Donald Trump again scorns science on masks and vaccines

Trump lashed out just hours after Dr. Redfield told a Senate committee that a vaccine would not be widely available until the middle of next year and that masks were so vital in fighting the disease caused by the coronavirus
US President Trump on Wednesday rejected the professional scientific conclusions of his own government about the prospects for a widely available coronavirus vaccine and the effectiveness of masks in curbing the spread of the virus as the death toll in the United States from the disease neared 200,000.

In a remarkable display even for him, Trump publicly slapped down Dr Robert R. Redfield, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as the president promised that a vaccine could be available in weeks and go “immediately” to the general public while diminishing the usefulness of masks despite evidence to the contrary.

The president’s comments put him at odds with the CDC, the world’s premier public health agency, over the course of a pandemic that he keeps insisting is “rounding the corner” to an end. Mr. Trump lashed out just hours after Dr. Redfield told a Senate committee that a vaccine would not be widely available until the middle of next year and that masks were so vital in fighting the disease caused by the coronavirus, Covid-19, that they may even more important than a vaccine.

“I think he made a mistake when he said that,” Mr. Trump told reporters. “It’s just incorrect information.” A vaccine would go “to the general public immediately,” the president insisted, and “under no circumstance will it be as late as the doctor said.” As for Dr. Redfield’s conclusion that masks may be more useful than a vaccine, Mr. Trump said that “he made a mistake,” maintaining that a “vaccine is much more effective than the masks.”

The sharply divergent messages further undercut any effort to forge a coherent response to the virus that the United Nations secretary general on Wednesday called the “No. 1 global security threat in our world today.” With Mr. Trump saying one thing and his health advisers saying another, many Americans have been left to figure out on their own whom to believe, with past polls showing that they have more faith in the experts than their president.

Rich nations bought up over 50% doses

A group of wealthy nations representing 13 percent of the global population have already bought up more than half of the promised doses of future Covid-19 vaccines, according to a report by Oxfam. "Access to a life-saving vaccine shouldn't depend on where you live or how much money you have," said Robert Silverman of Oxfam America.




Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel