WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (D-MI), Ranking Member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, is raising concerns that continued delays to the Presidential transition could interfere with the incoming Biden Administration’s efforts to effectively distribute potential Coronavirus vaccines once authorized or approved. Peters recently released a report highlighting shortcomings in the Trump Administration’s vaccine plans and making recommendations to ensure that vaccines will be safe, effective and trusted by the public, free, and widely available to every community.
“We’ve seen promising news about developing Coronavirus vaccines, but there are still numerous steps the federal government should be taking now to ensure that, once vaccines are authorized, we can quickly and effectively get them to our communities,” said Senator Peters. “As my recent report found, the Trump Administration should be taking aggressive action to promote transparency and trust in eventual vaccines, but their political interference with scientific and public health agencies has only eroded the public’s trust.”
Peters continued: “The extended delay in officially beginning the transition to the Biden Administration further risks undermining the federal government’s pandemic response and the progress we’ve made towards developing and distributing vaccines. Incoming Biden Administration officials need to be able to hit the ground running from day one to ensure that we can effectively address the ongoing pandemic and save American lives.”
READ PETERS' VACCINE REPORT: “Road to Recovery: Administration Must Build Public Trust and Ensure Safe, Effective, and Free Coronavirus Vaccines”
Peters’ report made key recommendations to ensure potential vaccines are trusted by the public and available to all who want it, including:
- The Trump Administration must immediately commit to and enact full transparency in the vaccine development, approval, and distribution processes.
- The CDC should release a detailed plan to address racial disparities in vaccine distribution.
- The Trump Administration must ensure every community in the country has the resources needed for equitable vaccine distribution.
- The Trump Administration must take swift action to invest in the critical supplies necessary to combat COVID-19 and plan for longer-term investments in domestic advanced manufacturing of these supplies.
As Ranking Member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Peters has called on the Administration to ensure the Coronavirus vaccine process is rooted in science and transparency and that its distribution is efficient, swift and equitable. Peters urged the Trump Administration to take swift action to ensure there is a sufficient supply of syringes and needles needed to quickly immunize millions of Americans once Coronavirus vaccines are authorized for distribution. Last month, Peters also led 29 of his colleagues in calling for an independent investigation into allegations of political interference at the nation’s top public health agencies.