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What Might Biden Do Differently With COVID Vaccine Rollouts?

By Keith Speights - Jan 15, 2021 at 7:32AM

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It's no secret that the rollouts of COVID-19 vaccines made by Pfizer (PFE 1.15%) and Moderna (MRNA 1.93%) isn't going quite as smoothly as hoped. In just a matter of days, though, there will be a changing of the guard in Washington, D.C. In this Motley Fool Live video recorded on Jan. 6, 2021, Healthcare and Cannabis Bureau Chief Corinne Cardina and writer Keith Speights discuss what the incoming Biden administration might do differently with COVID vaccine rollouts.

Corinne Cardina: It definitely is especially for those of us who know people who are there. Obviously we're going to have administration change around that same time. Jan. 20 is the inauguration day.

What could President-elect Joe Biden do when he gets into office to accelerate the vaccination trajectory? Do you have any ideas on, are we going to see a major change in how vaccine roll out is being approached?

Keith Speights: I think the incoming Biden administration will take several actions. Some of them will probably be more symbolic than pragmatic, but I do think there's certain steps they can take and probably will take to improve the situation.

One is that Joe Biden has said that he would like to commit $25 billion to the vaccination effort and assuming he gets that through, which probably would happen, that would help. I think you'll see a more active role from the federal government under a Biden administration and getting the vaccines out. Even though the state is still ultimately, call the shots, no pun intended, but the state still are responsible within their own domains. But I think you'll see the federal government take a more active role and that could help.

I personally think that operation workspace did a good job in helping foster the development of vaccines, but then when it came to the last mile of getting the vaccines administered to people, that they left it totally to the states and took a hands-off approach. And while that makes sense in some respects, in other ways it doesn't, and I think you'll see some changes on that front with an incoming Biden administration.

Corinne Cardina: A big part of the problem of leaving it to the states is that it's been really hard for states and cities to get money in the stimulus bills. It takes money to do these things and hopefully that will be a difference.

Keith Speights: I think you'll see many states -- probably not all of them -- I think you'll see many states welcome some additional help from the federal government and trying to get their citizens vaccinated.

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Pfizer Inc. Stock Quote
Pfizer Inc.
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Moderna, Inc. Stock Quote
Moderna, Inc.
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