Biden to invoke Defense Production Act for COVID-19 vaccines, adviser says


President-elect Joe Biden plans to invoke the Defense Production Act for COVID-19 vaccine production when he takes office in January, CNBC reported. 

Céline Gounder, MD, a member of Mr. Biden's COVID-19 advisory team, told CNBC Dec. 28 that he will invoke the act "to make sure the personal protective equipment, the test capacity and the raw materials for the vaccines are produced in adequate supply."

The act permits the president to force companies to prioritize manufacturing certain items for national security purposes and may help the U.S. secure items needed to produce COVID-19 vaccines. 

Pfizer signed a contract with the U.S. Dec. 23 to supply 100 million more doses of its vaccine, and as part of that deal the U.S. agreed to invoke the Defense Production Act to help the drugmaker source supplies. Some experts have expressed concerns that invoking the act for Pfizer would favor it over other drugmakers and give it unfair access to vaccine components, CNBC reported. 

Dr. Gounder didn't provide any specifics on how Mr. Biden would use the law equitably. 

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