U.S. declined to buy more Pfizer Covid vaccine doses, even after interim information, board member Gottlieb says

Dr. Scott Gottlieb, a member of Pfizer‘s board, instructed CNBC on Tuesday the corporate’s gives to present the U.S. further doses of its coronavirus vaccine in 2021 was declined by the Trump administration.

The authorities in July agreed to a deal with Pfizer and its German accomplice BioNTech for 100 million doses of their Covid-19 vaccine if it proved protected and efficient. The Food and Drug Administration is set to meet Thursday to evaluate the businesses’ emergency use software. Gottlieb spoke earlier than the company Tuesday launched the businesses’ medical trial information, which revealed no particular security considerations.

If it’s authorised, Pfizer’s total provide of vaccine produced in its Michigan manufacturing facility in December and the primary quarter of 2021 will go to the U.S, Gottlieb mentioned on “Squawk Box.” Under that July settlement, the federal government might purchase an one other 500 million doses.

“Pfizer did offer up an additional allotment coming out of that plant, basically the second-quarter allotment, to the United States government multiple times and as recently as after the interim data came out and we knew this vaccine looked to be effective,” mentioned Gottlieb, who beforehand led the FDA within the Trump administration from 2017 to 2019.

Gottlieb, whose feedback affirm a report Monday by The New York Times, mentioned he believes the U.S. authorities possible turned down Pfizer’s provide as a result of it wished to make sure that it diversified the variety of firms it agreed to buy possibility agreements with.

For instance, it has an settlement in place for 100 million doses of Moderna‘s Covid-19 vaccine. The Massachusetts-based biotech agency developed the one different vaccine at the moment awaiting FDA clearance. Johnson & Johnson additionally struck a take care of the Trump administration for 100 million doses of its coronavirus vaccine in August.

“I think they’re betting that more than one vaccine is going to get authorized and there will be more vaccines on the market,” Gottlieb mentioned. “And that, perhaps, could be why they didn’t take up that additional 100 million option agreement, which wouldn’t really have required them necessarily to front money. It was just an agreement that they would purchase those vaccines. So Pfizer has gone ahead and entered into some agreements with other countries to sell them some of that vaccine in the second quarter of 2021.”

The Department of Health and Human Services didn’t instantly reply to CNBC’s request for remark.

Disclosure: Scott Gottlieb is a CNBC contributor and is a member of the boards of Pfizer, genetic testing start-up Tempus and biotech firm Illumina. Gottlieb additionally serves as co-chair of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings′ and Royal Caribbean‘s “Healthy Sail Panel.” 

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