Bill Gates questions FDA’s credibility on COVID-19 vaccine; says only Pfizer has best shot at early COVID-19 vaccine
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is calling into question the credibility of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in an interview with Bloomberg News. Gates, a billionaire philanthropist who has helped sponsor several vaccine projects around the world, attacked the FDA’s credibility, claiming that he no longer believes the FDA is ‘the world’s premier public-health authority.’
The Gates Foundation chairman added that he doesn’t trust the CDC, either, because credibility and a focus public welfare have become “casualties of a presidency that has downplayed or dismissed science and medicine in the pursuit of political gain.”
“We saw with the completely bungled plasma statements that when you start pressuring people to say optimistic things, they go completely off the rails,” Gates told Bloomberg in an interview posted on Tuesday. “The FDA lost a lot of credibility there.”
In an interview with Bloomberg News, Gates, who has persisted in his defenses of the World Health Organization (WHO) despite growing evidence of missteps, cited FDA chief Stephen Hahn’s decision to “backtrack” on the agency’s statement on convalescent plasma to back up his claims.
In a separate appearance on CNBC, Gates said that only Pfizer has a chance of seeking approval by next month. Gates explained while many other pharma companies are in the race for the vaccine, only Pfizer could potentially deliver in a matter of weeks.
“The only vaccine that if everything went perfectly, might seek the emergency use license by the end of October, would be Pfizer,” the billionaire philanthropist told CNBC in an interview published Tuesday.
However, Gates said it is a real longshot to expect a viable coronavirus vaccine before the November election. “I do think once you get into, say, December or January, the chances are that at least two or three will (seek approval) — if the effectiveness is there,” Gates told CNBC.
In recent years, Gates has come under criticisms after an unearthed video showed him talking about using new vaccines for population control. During the 2010 TED talk presentation, Gates shared a mathematical formula that he believes could one day solve the climate change problem we are facing. Gates’ remark was part of larger strategies to slow down population growth in order to reduce CO2 emissions. Below is how Gates explained it:
“First, we’ve got population. The world today has 6.8 billion people. That’s headed up to about nine billion. Now, if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower that by, perhaps, 10 or 15 percent …”