US President Donald Trump has said he expects a vaccine for coronavirus to be available for every American by April.
Speaking at a news conference on Friday, Trump told reporters he was optimistic of the vaccine being available in just seven months time and that it would be distributed within 24 hours of federal approval.
“Hundreds of millions of doses will be available every month, and we expect to have enough vaccines for every American by April,” Trump said.
“In a short time we’ll have a safe and effective vaccine and we’ll defeat the virus,” he added.
It comes at some odds with the US government scientists’ forecast, with Trump repeatedly clashing with health officials over Covid-19.
He said he agreed with Dr Robert Redfield’s assessment that a vaccine will be widely available some time between April and September, but that he also thought it could be much earlier than that.
When questioned if he knew more than Redfield, who is the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, he said: “In many cases I do.”
Trump had previously suggested a vaccine could be approved in October, although that timeline looks increasingly ambitious with experts saying it is unlikely.
The current US President, who is bidding to stay in office come November’s election, has also suggested reducing the number of coronavirus tests carried out would lower the overall case count and in turn encourage people to return to work and reopen the economy.
It’s an approach opposed by public health officials.
On Friday, a further 47,486 people in the US tested positive for the disease, according to Covid Tracking Project data, while the national death toll rose by 901.