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We can?t skip steps on the road to a COVID-19 vaccine

Operation Warp Speed
the Center for Ethics and Policy
Carnegie Mellon University
the University of Florida
New York Times
the Food and Drug Administration
the Hastings Center

Alex John London
Natalie Dean
Karen Maschke


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the United States
New York

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The New York Times
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Filed under:There’s only so much researchers can do to accelerate the processThe pharmaceutical company Moderna started the last, longest step in the process of testing its COVID-19 vaccine candidate at the end of July — a Phase 3 clinical trial. Just because a vaccine exists doesn’t mean it’s reasonable or ethical to just give it to people before there’s proof it works, and sticking to the process is why the vaccines on the market today are so safe.“It’s just fundamentally wrong to think that because there’s an emergency, that we should somehow throw out aspects of scientific research,” says Alex John London, director of the Center for Ethics and Policy at Carnegie Mellon University. “If whatever it is we’re testing is really showing that it’s working, scientists would be remiss to continue to test it in people,” says Karen Maschke, who studies human research ethics at the Hastings Center in New York. “We need to know that it’s safe.” Even if it doesn’t come with side effects, giving people an experimental vaccine outside of a clinical trial and before researchers know if it actually works is risky. “We need to know if it works because people are going to change their behavior after they get it,” London says.Releasing a vaccine to the public before it’s proven to be safe and effective could also erode public trust in vaccines.

As said here by Nicole Wetsman