Moderna CEO says the world will have to live with Covid 'forever'
- Stephane Bancel, CEO of Covid-19 vaccine maker Moderna, warned Wednesday that the virus will be around "forever."
- Public health officials and infectious disease experts have said there is a high likelihood that Covid-19 will become an endemic disease, meaning it will be present at all times, though likely at lower levels than it is now.
- "SARS-CoV-2 is not going away," Bancel said during a panel discussion at the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference.
The CEO of Covid-19 vaccine maker Moderna warned Wednesday that the coronavirus that has brought world economies to a standstill and overwhelmed hospitals will be around "forever."
Public health officials and infectious disease experts have said there is a high likelihood that Covid-19 will become an endemic disease, meaning it will become present in communities at all times, though likely at lower levels than it is now.
Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel appeared to agree Wednesday that Covid-19 will become endemic, saying "SARS-CoV-2 is not going away."
"We are going to live with this virus, we think, forever," he said during a panel discussion at the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference.
Health officials will have to continuously watch for new variants of the virus, so scientists can produce vaccines to fight them, he said. Researchers in Ohio said Wednesday they've discovered two new variants likely originating in the U.S. and that one of them quickly became the dominant strain in Columbus, Ohio, over a three-week period in late December and early January.
Moderna's vaccine has been authorized by the Food and Drug Administration for use in Americans who are 18 years old and older. Additional studies still needed to be completed in children, whose immune systems can respond differently to vaccines than those of adults.
U.S. officials are racing to distribute doses of both vaccines, but it will likely take months before the U.S. can vaccinate enough people to achieve herd immunity, meaning the virus won't have enough new hosts to spread. Still, Bancel said Wednesday he expects the U.S. will be one of the first large countries to achieve "sufficient protection" against the virus.
There are already four coronaviruses that are endemic across the world, but they aren't as contagious or deadly as Covid-19, according to the World Health Organization.
Stop saying these 4 phrases to your kids, says neuroscientist—how successful parents teach self-discipline
This group is calling for a new round of $1,400 stimulus checks to help Social Security recipients
Toast built a $30 billion business by defying Silicon Valley and surviving a 'suicide mission'
Apple claimed it had less than 20 million TV+ subscribers in July, showbiz union says
Cramer’s week ahead: 'We're now headed into a calm before the storm moment here'