The governor of new york has become the latest figure to cast doubt on the trump administrations process to authorise a coronavirus vaccine, saying his state would do a separate review because he does not trust the federal government.
Andrew cuomo said on thursday his officials would review any vaccine licensed by the us food and drug administration, warning that the federal process had become too politicised.
Mr cuomo said: frankly, im not going to trust the federal governments opinion, and i wouldnt recommend [a vaccine] to new yorkers based on the federal governments opinion.
Us states do not have the power to approve a vaccine or stop one from being authorised. but mr cuomo said on thursday he was appointing a 16-person panel to decide on the logistics of how any vaccine would be distributed in new york, which could slow down or even stop distribution of an immunisation if it deemed it to be unsafe.
Donald trump, the us president, has said he expects a vaccine to be ready within weeks, while stephen hahn, the head of the fda, has said he is willing to grant emergency authorisation even before the final phase of clinical trials.
This has led democrats such as mr cuomo to warn that mr trump is pushing his appointees to rush out a vaccine before one has been proved to be both safe and effective. mr trumps advisers reportedly call the idea of securing a vaccine approval before novembers election the holy grail.
Kamala harris, the democratic us vice-presidential nominee, recently refused to commit to taking any vaccine that was approved before the election. she told the news channel cnn earlier this month: i would not trust donald trump. and it would have to be a credible source of information that talks about the efficacy and the reliability of whatever hes talking about.
Her comments were denounced by mr trump, who accused her of playing with anti-vaccine rhetoric despite his own past as a prominent vaccine sceptic.
As the two parties have argued, trust in a potential vaccine appears to have plummeted, with only around half of americans now saying they would take one if it was made available before the election, according to the pew research center, down 21 points from may.