Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla is yet to take the coronavirus vaccine developed by his company along with BioNTech. He said that Pfizer executives will wait for their turn to take the shot. Bourla said that he will take the Pfizer vaccine as soon as he can, and that he doesn't want executives to "cut the line" and set a bad example.
"I'm 59 years old, in good health, I'm not working on the frontline, so my type it is not recommended to get vaccination now," he told CNBC. He added that he might consider taking the vaccine earlier than some of his age and health to demonstrate the confidence the company has on the vaccine and encourage others to take it too.
He said that Pfizer runs a lot of polls to see what would make people willing to take the vaccine. Bourla added that one of the top responses is if the CEO takes it. That response, he said, ranks higher than President-elect Joe Biden taking the vaccine. "But we have made a decision that if we have to do that we would not do it with our executives, so none of the executives or board members will cut the line," he added. They will take it at an appropriate time based on their age and occupation.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) already authorised the vaccine for emergency use. The first one to get the shot was Sandra Lindsay, a nurse in New York City. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advisory group has also said that healthcare workers and nursing home residents must be the first ones to take the shot but it is up to each state on how to prioritise their most vulnerable populations.
Top US officials would also be given early access to the vaccine. Donald Trump had tweeted that White House officials must be given the vaccine later in the vaccination drive, unless specifically necessary. He said he is looking forward to taking the vaccine at the appropriate time.
Former US Presidents Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and George W Bush have said that they are willing to take the vaccine on camera to show that it is safe.
Bourla said that he is very confident that things will go very smoothly with the vaccination. He added that the company has been preparing for months for the distribution. Pfizer said that it would produce 1.3 billion doses of its vaccine next year but that's only a 'commitment to the world' and that the company plans to actually make much more.