On November 9, 2020, Pfizer and BioNTech announced that their COVID-19 vaccine candidate had shown a 90% efficacy rate in early-stage trials. This was exciting news in the fight against COVID-19, and since then, the two companies have been working to make the vaccine available to people around the world.
One important step in this process was the agreement that Pfizer and BioNTech made with the US government in July 2020. Under this agreement, the government would pay $1.95 billion for 100 million doses of the vaccine, with an option to purchase up to 500 million more doses.
The agreement was part of Operation Warp Speed, a US government initiative to accelerate the development, manufacturing, and distribution of vaccines and therapies for COVID-19. The funding from the government helped Pfizer and BioNTech to conduct larger-scale trials, manufacture more doses of the vaccine, and begin distribution as soon as the vaccine received emergency use authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
On December 11, 2020, the FDA granted emergency use authorization to the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and vaccinations began in the US shortly thereafter. The vaccine has since been approved or authorized for emergency use by many countries around the world.
The agreement between Pfizer, BioNTech, and the US government was a critical step in the development and distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine. The funding from the government helped to speed up the process and ensure that the vaccine was available as soon as possible. It also shows the importance of public-private partnerships in solving global health challenges.
As of August 2021, Pfizer has shipped over 1 billion doses of its vaccine, and the company continues to work on improving the vaccine and developing booster shots to address emerging variants of the virus. The partnership between Pfizer and BioNTech, as well as their collaboration with the US government, has been a critical part of the effort to end the COVID-19 pandemic.