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Hello, everyone, and welcome to another busy day. Once again, the to-do list is growing quickly thanks to Zoom meetings, Skype calls, and what-not. So please join us as we fire up the trusty coffee kettle for another cup of delicious stimulation. Our choice today is glazed doughnut — yum. And we will hoist our cup in honor of the shortest of our short people who turns another page in the proverbial calendar. Now, though, it is time to get cracking. So here are a few tidbits. We hope your day is productive and safe. …

The ambitious drive to produce Covid-19 vaccines at warp speed seems to be running up against reality, STAT explains. Pauses in clinical trials to investigate potential safety issues, a slower-than-expected rate of infections among participants in at least one of the trials, and signals that an expert panel advising the Food and Drug Administration may not be comfortable recommending use of vaccines based on very limited safety and efficacy data appear to be adding up to a slippage in the estimates of when vaccine will be ready to be deployed.

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  • While “Advocacy Groups” have a point – “No company has shared information on research and development, clinical-trial, or manufacturing costs” – it is a bit off the mark. Under manufacturing (and even R&D) there are capital costs for even existing facilities, as well as regulatory and other expenses that no one includes in their calculus for “a $2 drug.”
    This is not an apologia for “Big Pharma” but it is an observation that “the price of a tomato has to include part of the cost of having the farm.”

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