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Monday, November 9, 2020

Don't get too excited about Pfizer's made-in-Michigan COVID-19 vaccine just yet

Posted By on Mon, Nov 9, 2020 at 12:28 PM

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It feels like there could finally a light at the end of the dark tunnel of the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Monday, Pfizer announced promising news, saying that early results found its experimental vaccine to be more than 90% effective. If approved, the vaccine would be produced and distributed right here in Kalamazoo, Michigan.



"This is great news for our families, our frontline workers, and our small business owners," Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said in a statement. "Michigan has always been on the forefront of innovation, and I am proud to see that Pfizer, a Michigan business and one of the largest pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities in the world, will produce the vaccine in our great state."

U.S. stock futures skyrocketed following the news. But a word of caution: as the New York Times points out, the company released the news in a press release, not a peer-reviewed scientific journal.

"It is not conclusive evidence that the vaccine is safe and effective, and the initial finding of more than 90 percent efficacy could change as the trial goes on," the paper cautioned.

Whitmer also urged patience as it would take the company time to manufacture and distribute a vaccine.

"We must remember that when the vaccine is ready, it will take time to distribute, and we need everyone to continue doing their part to protect each other from COVID-19," she said. "That’s why it’s so important that President-Elect Biden has announced a team of medical experts to lead our country’s COVID-19 response. It is crucial that leaders across the country listen to science and the recommendations of health experts, and President-Elect Biden has made it clear that he shares that commitment. I look forward to working closely with him and medical experts everywhere to fight this virus and save lives."

Biden announced a COVID-19 task force on Monday.

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