Merck CEO issues warning on coronavirus: ‘Until all of us are secure, none of us are secure’

Kenneth C. Frazier, Chairman and C.E.O. of Merck & Co.

Stephanie Keith | Getty Images

Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier confused Tuesday the significance of making a vaccine to stop Covid-19 broadly accessible, saying “until all of us are safe, none of us are safe.”

The coronavirus has proven “that it does not respect borders,” spreading to each excessive and low-income nations, Frazier mentioned Tuesday afternoon throughout an interview with CNBC’s “Closing Bell.” “In a way, you could actually say, until all of us are safe, none of us are safe.” 

Earlier Tuesday, Merck introduced that it plans to work alongside nonprofit scientific analysis group IAVI to develop a possible vaccine in opposition to the coronavirus.

Merck plans to strategy its vaccine growth “in a responsible” however “very aggressive fashion” as stress mounts to discover a vaccine to stop Covid-19, Frazier instructed CNBC. He mentioned he was not ready to provide a timeline on when a vaccine might be accessible, however mentioned on the whole “clinical trials take a long time.”

“If you’re going to immunize a lot people, millions if not billions of people, you’re going to have to make sure that you know exactly what that vaccine will do in people and you can ensure the safety of people,” he mentioned. 

The potential vaccine from Merck is only one of a number of in growth to struggle the coronavirus, which has unfold to greater than 5.5 million individuals worldwide in lower than 5 months, in line with knowledge compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

More than 100 vaccines have been in growth globally as of April 30, in line with the World Health Organization. U.S. officers and scientists are hopeful a vaccine to stop Covid-19 shall be prepared within the first half of 2021, about 12 to 18 months since Chinese scientists first recognized the coronavirus and mapped its genetic sequence.

In an interview with the Financial Times, Frazier referred to as 12- to 18-month targets “very aggressive,” including “it is not something I would put out there that I would want to hold Merck to.”

He instructed CNBC that there’s “strong confidence” amongst scientists that they’ll discover a vaccine for the coronavirus. He mentioned the corporate goes to spend “what it takes” to search out one thing that works, including it has the “financial capacity.”

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