Bill Gates promises to ‘save months’ in coronavirus vax production

April 7, 2020

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has promised to spend billions helping companies produce a vaccine for the novel coronavirus. 

In a recent interview on “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah,” Bill Gates, the found of Microsoft Corp., said his foundation will “fund factories” for seven of the “most promising” vaccine candidates. Of those seven, Gates said the foundation will ultimately pick two for mass production.

Even though his plan will involve spending billions on vaccines that aren’t produced, Gates said it’s a better approach than waiting to find out which vaccines works and then building facilities for manufacturing. 

“Every month counts,” he said.    

There are currently a number of drug companies, including Moderna, Inovio, Johnson & Johnson and more, with vaccines in development. Moderna and Inovio’s candidates have already entered phase 1 clinical trials.  

Since retiring from Microsoft, Gates has focused on his philanthropic efforts. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have been major players in global efforts to combat several diseases. In 2015, Gates gave a prophetic TEDTalk on how his experience watching epidemics such as Ebola unfold showed that the world was not ready for a viral pandemic.

Read the Wall Street Journal report.