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Trump moves to formally remove the US from the World Health Organization

Photo by Gage Skidmore

President Donald Trump has formally moved to end the US membership of the World Health Organization.

He has notified both the UN and Congress of his intentions to withdraw on 6th July 2021. The Democrat controlled congress will probably not approve the move, but a 1948 resolution allows the US to withdraw if it gives a one year notice and pays all outstanding fees.

Trump’s Operation Warp Speed selects Pfizer, Merck, AstraZeneca and Moderna as vaccine finalists

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

The Trump administration has selected the finalists for the COVID-19 vaccine it is seeking to make widely available by the end of the year.

The companies to make the cut are mostly pharmaceutical giants with Pfizer, Merck and AstraZeneca being among the world’s largest, while Moderna is the smallest company of the finalists.

This means their vaccine programs will get access to additional funding from the government, clinical trial assistance and help with manufacturing.

Pharmafile.com's weekly COVID-19 news round-up

Image credit: CDC

Trump continues to play a key role in the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic, with the US currently coping with the largest death toll from the virus worldwide. In the last week he announced a government programme to deliver a working vaccine in record time, before later announcing that he is currently taking the controversial and unproven malaria drug hydroxychloroquine to avoid infection.

US threatens to permanently cut off WHO funding

Photo by U.S. Embassy, Jakarta

The US has threatened to permanently cut off funding to the World Health Organization if they do not take proposed reforms suggested by the Trump Administration.

President Trump wrote a letter to Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, the Director-General of the WHO, saying that the organization had an “alarming lack of independence from the People’s Republic of China.”

Trump announces ‘Operation Warp Speed’ to develop a COVID-19 vaccine by the end of the year

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

President Trump has announced a task force to quickly develop a vaccine for the US, titled Operation Warp Speed.

Explaining the project, Trump told reporters at the White House Rose Garden that it is: “A massive scientific, industrial, and logistical endeavor unlike anything our country has seen since the Manhattan Project.  You really could say that nobody has seen anything like we’re doing, whether it’s ventilators or testing.  Nobody has seen anything like we’re doing now, within our country, since the Second World War.”

Trump to announce leaders of the US project to develop a coronavirus vaccine

Photo by Gage Skidmore

President Donald Trump is set to announce that Moncef Slaoui, the former head of GlaxoSmithKline’s vaccine division, and Gustave Perna, a four star US General, will lead a project to develop a coronavirus vaccine.

Teva donates millions of hydroxychloroquine sulfate tablets, touted by Trump as coronavirus treatment

Photo by Gage Skidmore

Teva pharmaceuticals have said they will provide ten million doses of its anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, which President Trump has been promoting as an effective coronavirus treatment.

Six million of these doses will be delivered to the US by 31 March. Teva Executive Vice President Brendan O’Grady said: “We are committed to helping to supply as many tablets as possible as demand for this treatment accelerates at no cost.”

Trump tried to solicit US-exclusivity for coronavirus vaccine, report claims

Image Credit: Gage Skidmore, https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Donald_Trump_(8566730507)_(2).jpg

President Trump has attracted criticism from all sides over his response to the novel coronavirus outbreak; after repeatedly downplaying the potential impact of the virus before finally declaring a state of national emergency on 13 March, the US President came under fire just days later after it was confirmed he had attempted to solicit the pharmaceutical industry to develop a coronavirus vaccine exclusively for US patients.

German biopharma firm CureVac is one of a number of industry firms currently hard at work developing a vaccine for the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Trump meets pharmaceutical executives to discuss COVID-19 vaccine

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

President Trump has met with several representatives of the top pharmaceutical companies to discuss progress being made on a coronavirus vaccine.

Executives from Gilead Sciences, GlaxoSmithKline, Inovio pharmaceuticals, Moderna and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals were all in attendance.

How do the Presidential frontrunners plan to combat the opioid crisis?

Published on 12/02/20 at 12:58pm

The widespread addiction to extremely potent, legal painkillers has decimated the lives of millions across the United States. Overdoses from opioids have surpassed car crashes and gun violence as the leading cause of death in Americans under the age of 55. The epidemic has killed nearly 400,000 people since 2000 – more people than HIV at the peak of that disease – while its economic cost has been placed between $50 billion and $1 trillion.

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