Biden to announce 'historic' partnership between Merck and J&J

March 2, 2021

In a rare move for the pharma industry, two competitors are teaming up to help boost vaccine supplies. 

President Joe Biden is expected to announce this week that Merck is stepping up to help manufacture J&J COVID-19 vaccines.

Merck had its own vaccine candidate in the works but abandoned it in January after studies showed that was not as effective as other late-stage candidates.

Biden is expected to potentially leverage the Defense Production Act to help pay for the needed equipment and supplies to prepare Merck’s manufacturing capacity for the J&J shot. It is still unclear how many facilities Merck is going to use for the effort or if they will need to be retrofitted.

Biden has promised to deliver enough vaccines for all Americans by July. 

Read the CNN report.