White House Warns It Cannot Afford COVID-19 Related Solutions If Cases Increase: FT

The White House says that the U.S. is running out of money to pay for COVID-19 vaccines, tests, and treatments, making it unprepared for any rising cases in the future.

According to the Financial Times report, officials said they would have to scale back some of the federal government’s planned drug purchases after Congress rejected a $15 billion package to boost government spending on the pandemic. 

The warning comes amid rising infection levels in Europe and China. Experts say a similar wave is likely to begin in the U.S. soon. The White House warned that it would soon have to reduce purchases of monoclonal antibody treatments, including one made by AstraZeneca plc AZN.

One senior administration official said: “For months, we have made clear to Congress on a bipartisan basis that the funding for tests, treatments, and vaccines was drying up and that additional funds would be needed.” 

Another added: “Because it takes months to ramp up to rebuild capacity, failure to invest now would leave us less prepared for any potential future surges. So providing funding only when cases rise would be far too late to make a difference.” 

To address the threat of a new wave, Pfizer Inc PFEBioNTech SE BNTX have filed a US application for a second COVID-19 booster dose for people aged 65 years and over.

Photo by Gerd Altman via Pixaby

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