President Trump on Wednesday said Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Robert Redfield gave Congress “incorrect information” about masks and the speed of COVID-19 vaccine distribution.
Redfield told a Senate subcommittee hours earlier that the public won’t receive a potential vaccine until summer 2021. He also said wearing a face mask probably is better protection against COVID-19 than will be a vaccine.
“I think he made a mistake,” Trump said at a White House press briefing.
“We’ll be able to distribute at least 100 million vaccine doses by the end of 2020 and a large number much sooner than that,” Trump said. “Under no circumstance will it be as late as the doctor said.”
Trump said that he called Redfield to express his displeasure.
“When I called up Robert today, I said to him, ‘What’s with the mask?’ He said, ‘I think I answered that question incorrectly.’ I think maybe he misunderstood it, I mean you know, you have two questions — maybe misunderstood both of them.”
The CDC did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Post about whether Redfield misspoke.
Trump called upon his coronavirus adviser Dr. Scott Atlas to confirm that Redfield was incorrect about the likely speed of vaccine distribution. Atlas said current plans would see production of 700 million vaccine doses by the end of March.
“There will be 700 million doses by end of Q1,” Atlas said.
Atlas said that “all the refrigerators that are necessary, everything is going to be a place for this,” meaning distribution delays won’t push public vaccination til summer.
Trump said at the press briefing that a vaccine would be available “to the general public immediately. When we go, we go. We’re not looking to say, ‘Gee in six months we’re going to start giving it to the general public.’ No, we want to go immediately.”
Trump rarely wears a mask and said “a vaccine is much more effective than the mask.”
Redfield told senators that “this face mask is more guaranteed to protect me than the vaccine.”
The CDC leader said about vaccine distribution: “There will be vaccine that will initially be available sometime between November and December, but very limited supply and will have to be prioritized … If you’re asking me when is it going to be generally available to the American public so we can begin to take advantage of vaccine to get back to our regular life, I think we’re probably looking at late second quarter, third quarter 2021.”
On Wednesday, the Defense Department and Department of Health and Human Services released plans for vaccine distribution amid hopes for positive results in October from clinical trials.
The Trump administration plan calls for rapid distribution of a vaccine free of cost and anticipates two doses administered 21 to 28 days apart. Health care workers and vulnerable people would be prioritized in the first wave.
Mexican women demanding legalization of abortion clash with police
MEXICO CITY – Women charged police lines and threw Molotov cocktails at officers in Mexico City on Monday during protests demanding the legalization of abortion in the majority Roman Catholic country.
The protesters, clad in the green bandanas that have become the symbol of the pro-choice movement in Latin America, gathered in Mexico’s capital to mark International Safe Abortion Day, which is celebrated each year on Sept. 28.
Police, many of them female officers, responded by spraying plumes of tear gas at the women, some of whom wielded hammers, and threw bottles and paint.
At least one officer was briefly engulfed in flames after being hit by a Molotov cocktail, before colleagues doused the fire with an extinguisher, television images showed.
Abortion is illegal in Mexico outside the capital city and the southern state of Oaxaca, which legalized the medical procedure last year. In the rest of Mexico, abortion is banned except under certain circumstances, such as rape.
Abortion law has been receiving renewed attention after the death in the United States of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a pioneering women’s rights advocate, which has cast doubt over the future of legal abortion there.
Man accused of hitting ex with car, running over her son’s foot in NYC
A man is being sought by police after allegedly striking his ex-girlfriend with his car and then running over her 9-year-old son’s foot in Brooklyn Tuesday morning, police said.
The 41-year-old woman told cops that she and her son were walking in front of 496 Williams Ave. around 1 a.m. when she ran into her 48-year-old ex-boyfriend, whom police officials identified as John Santiago.
The woman alleged that the former flame struck her with his silver Honda Accord and then ran over her son’s right foot.
The mom and son were taken to Brookdale Hospital and were expected to survive. The child was receiving X-rays to determine if his foot was broken, police said.
The Administration for Children’s Services was alerted to the incident, police said.
Hiker dies after plunge off Oregon’s Devil’s Cauldron Overlook
A 43-year-old Oregon man fell to his death at the state’s Devil’s Cauldron Overlook, plunging more than 100 feet off the edge of the precipice while posing for a photo, according to reports.
Steven Gastelum had climbed a tree at the edge of the cliff Sunday when a branch broke off and he plummeted off the cliff, the Oregonian reported.
Gastelum, of Seaside, Oregon, had hiked to the top of the overlook at Oswald West State Park before falling into the Pacific Ocean.
Police arrived at the scene around 2 p.m., using jet skis to pluck Gastelum out of the water and bring him to shore, where he was rushed to Tillamook hospital, according to KOIN-TV. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.
The cliff edge is marked with warning signs urging hikers to remain clear of the edge.
In July, a hiker at the Grand Canyon fell to her death while also taking a photograph.
Maria Salgado Lopez, 59, of Arizona, was snapping a pic at Mather Point in the canyon when she plunged off the edge.
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