The coronavirus has killed more than 800,000 people worldwide and roughly 177,000 in the U.S.
Over 23 million people worldwide and more than 5.7 million in America have contracted COVID-19. Millions of jobs and billions in wealth have been lost, and learning has been disrupted for students from kindergarten to college.
The health, economic, social and governing crises make clear the extent of the coronavirus catastrophe. Widely available and more effective treatments — and ultimately a vaccine — can’t come soon enough.
But the timetable should be measured by medical efficacy, not “Trump time,” which is the term used by White House trade adviser Peter Navarro when he confronted Food and Drug Administration officials over COVID treatments and the medical supply chain, according to an Axios report.
President Donald Trump was just as blunt, tweeting (what else?) an unfounded accusation that the FDA was slowing treatment for political purposes.
“The deep state, or whoever, over at the FDA is making it very difficult for drug companies to get people in order to test the vaccines and therapeutics,” Trump wrote. “Obviously, they are hoping to delay the answer until after November 3rd. Must focus on speed, and saving lives!”
Nov. 3, of course, is Election Day. For the president to presume that the professional experts who have committed their careers to health care would risk lives for political purposes is a profound insult. The fact is that the FDA adheres to a scientific timetable that already is moving faster than it usually does.