GZERO Media logo
{{ subpage.title }}

Hurdles to bringing a COVID-19 vaccine to market

Kevin Sneader, Global Managing Partner of McKinsey, looks at the challenges around a COVID-19 vaccine from the corporate business leadership perspective on Business In 60 Seconds.

What will it take to bring a COVID-19 vaccine to market?

Now, there are reasons to believe that a COVID-19 vaccine can indeed be developed faster than any other in history. For a start, the characteristics of this virus, unlike some families of viruses, coronaviruses overall have been shown to mutate at relatively low to moderate rates. Moreover, the sheer number of development efforts mean that over 275 vaccine candidates in development, with over 45 already in clinical trials. This is coupled with unprecedented access to funding, given over $17 billion has been committed to vaccine development and supply. That said, there are multiple hurdles to overcome. They start with getting the science right, including validating the platform technologies and demonstrating both safety and efficacy. But let's not forget that we also need enough capacity to manufacture and supply in place to reach patient populations now, and over time. And last, but by no means least, people need to be willing to be vaccinated. In the US in May, 72% of Americans said they would get vaccinated. That number has fallen to 51% in September.

The Graphic Truth: Two different pandemics - EU vs US



The United States and the European Union have comparable population sizes, but until recently the trajectories of their COVID-19 outbreaks in recent months have been vastly different. In what many medical experts are now calling a "third wave" of the pandemic, coronavirus cases are rapidly increasing across most US states, and over 41,000 Americans are now hospitalized with COVID-19. Meanwhile, most European countries are fighting a full-blown "second wave" that has seen the continent's latest average mortality rates surpass those of the US, and led many European governments to implement fresh restrictions to contain the spread of the coronavirus. The current situation is a sharp contrast to the disparity seen over the summer, when US cases were spiking across much of the Midwest and South while European countries seemed to have kept the coronavirus (mostly) in check due to stricter adherence to social distancing and mask-wearing. Here's a look at the seven-day rolling average of new COVID-19 cases, and three-day rolling averages of new deaths and new deaths per capita in the EU vs the US since March.

How the US-China relationship would change under a “President Biden”

"Instead of simply embracing China, we have to draw clear lines about where China can legitimately pursue its interests and where we are going to push back." According to Anne-Marie Slaughter, who was a top State Department official under President Obama, a President Biden would do well to avoid blaming Beijing for the pandemic. There will be plenty else, aside from pointing fingers, for the two countries to worry about. She talks to Ian Bremmer on GZERO World.

Watch the episode: How a "President Biden" could reshape US foreign policy

Quick Take: One week until the US election

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take:

Hi, everybody. Ian Bremmer here. This is the last week before elections, have only lasted for two years, cost billions of dollars. We're sick of it. We're ready. We're ready to get past this. What do we think is going to happen?

Well, let's be clear. Biden is way ahead, and it's hard for incumbents to lose. They tended to win in the United States. They need to be unpopular and unlucky to lose, but Trump does seem to be checking both of those boxes. He's never been enormously popular. He has a pretty narrow base that is very strongly supportive of him, some 38 to 42% back and forth, but a narrow band, which has been pretty consistent for most of them the last four years, but he's also been massively unlucky. Unlucky, how?

Read Now Show less

What We're Watching: Europe's brutal second wave, protests in Iraq, tough talk from Turkey

Europe's second wave: After a brutal spring in which Europe emerged as a coronavirus epicenter, the outbreak largely subsided across the continent in the summer, allowing many Europeans to travel and gather in large groups. But now, a second wave of infection is wreaking havoc across Europe, with the region reporting more than 1.3 million cases this past week alone, according to the World Health Organization, the highest seven-day increase to date. Former coronavirus hotspots like France, Italy, Spain, and the UK are again grappling with a record number of new cases that could soon dwarf the out-of-control outbreaks seen this past spring. Meanwhile, countries like Germany, Poland, and the Czech Republic that staved off massive outbreaks in the spring are also seeing an unprecedented number of new daily cases. As Europe now accounts for around 22 percent of all new COVID infections worldwide, hospitals in many cities are being swamped as many struggle to source life-saving equipment. As a result, Spain declared a national state of emergency Sunday, imposing nighttime curfews, while Italy imposed its strictest lockdown since May. Europe's Center for Disease Prevention and Control warned against complacency, noting that while transmission is mostly between younger people, keeping the death rate low, that could swiftly change if Europe doesn't get the virus in check.

Read Now Show less

Latest