NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An unprecedented pledge was signed Tuesday by nine of the leading pharmaceutical companies racing to develop a COVID-19 vaccine.

It comes amid concerns over politics, CBS2’s Dr. Max Gomez reported Tuesday.

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The pharmaceutical industry has made astounding progress in developing a coronavirus vaccine. What normally takes years has been accomplished in six months, with several vaccines already in what is hoped to be definitive phase three safety and efficacy trials. That said, there is widespread concern that the Food and Drug Administration will buckle under intense White House pressure to prematurely approve a vaccine. That’s what led to this unprecedented pledge.


The CEOs of nine of the world’s leading vaccine manufacturers have signed the highly unusual pledge, to ensure public confidence in a vaccine.

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The pledge reads in parts that the companies will: “only submit for approval or emergency use authorization after demonstrating safety and efficacy through a Phase 3 clinical study that is designed and conducted to meet requirements of expert regulatory authorities such as the FDA.”

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This is while President Donald Trump has suggested that a vaccine may be available by Election Day, raising concerns that the FDA will be pressured to approve a vaccine without complete scientific evidence, which some experts say has already happened.

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“Like what happened with hydroxychloroquine and convalescent plasma, where there is this questions which looms over the whole decision-making process,” one Johns Hopkins doctor said.

And Dr. Anthony Fauci has also said that a vaccine is unlikely by Election Day.

“It’s not impossible … but it’s unlikely that we’ll have a definitive answer at that time. More likely, by the end of the year,” Fauci said.

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All of this has severely undermined public confidence in the vaccine effort. A CBS News poll now finds that barely 1 in 5 would get the vaccine right away while more than three-fourths of those polled said they would either wait or never get one.

Dr. Fauci and others have said that all the vaccine data will be evaluated by experts outside the FDA to further reassure the public, since a good vaccine that no one takes will not stem the pandemic.

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