Expert insight

Interview – CNN – What might happen when a Covid-19 vaccine is ready?

11 May 2020
  • Thomas Cueni Director General

Thomas Cueni, IFPMA Director-General, spoke to CNN about the challenges to be faced in the manufacturing of a COVID-19 vaccine on a large-scale and how the industry, as a whole, will respond to the challenges. 

00:02 to 1:04 (Transcript of Thomas Cueni’s part)

ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER (AS): At least, 100 COVID-19 vaccines are in development around the world. From small biotech firms and university research groups to the big pharmaceutical companies. Eight groups have broken through to the next phase, human trials.

If one succeeds and gets regulatory approval from individual countries, the next challenge begins, producing enough vaccine for the world.

THOMAS CUENI (TC): When you look at the biggest vaccine manufacturers, there may be five in the industrialized world able and with skillset know how to manufacture at large scales. And even if you combine their capacity and they don’t have excess capacity, they might struggle to come up with the volumes you need right now.

AS: Pharmaceutical companies are forming partnerships. Even united, they could face major manufacturing challenges.

TC: At the end of the day, you may have a vaccine, but then you find out you don’t have enough vials. The bottleneck might be at the end of the supply chain.

Click here to watch the full interview.