RAPID CITY, S.D. — Dr. John Fleming says President Trump fully supports vaccine development, directing that billions of dollars be spent to make it happen and hoping to have it by the end of the year or sooner.
There are currently 3 vaccine candidates in the final phase of testing.
“We are going to be bringing this vaccine to the market in record time without cutting any corners whatsoever,” Fleming said.
Fleming says any or all of the vaccines will be distributed as soon as they’re deemed safe and effective, which Fleming says could be as soon as October, but might also not happen until early next year.
And while we wait, he says to follow the 3 W’s: Wear a mask, Watch your distance and Wash your hands frequently.
“These vaccines when they are released will end this pandemic, but in the meantime, we need to get back to our normal lives and as much as we can, get people back to school, back to work,” Fleming said. “And at the same time, we have to be very respectful of this disease.”
He says to be particularly careful to protect the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. He goes on to say that we are at a point where Americans should use common sense to get on with our daily routines.
“Through this entire pandemic, not one single American went without a ventilator who needed one, or an ICU bed, but we are past that now,” Fleming said. “We have therapeutics, doctors have gotten much better at treating this, the case fatality case had dropped from a peak of around 30 – 35 percent to around 3 percent now.”
As we approach flu season, there may be a challenge because COVID-19 and influenza have similar symptoms. However, testing can help to differentiate the diseases and both have similar treatments.