BETHESDA, Md. (WDVM)– After three Maryland residents tested positive for the Coronavirus Governor Hogan declared Maryland in a state of emergency. Senators Chris Van Hollen, Ben Cardin, and Congressman Jamie Raskin visited the National Institute of Health and spoke with doctors who are currently working on a vaccine.
“Most of our conversations centered around vaccines and this is the place where they took the information about the virus from China and began to develop the antibodies,” said Senator Chris Van Hollen.
The phase 1 trials of the vaccine are expected to begin as early as next week.
“Phase 1 trials in Washington state on healthy people about 40 adults that will take 2 to 3 months,” said Senator Hollen.
One of the main focuses of the vaccine is to make sure that it is safe and affordable for everyone.
“We have a responsibility to make sure that it’s available as soon as possible and affordable,” said Senator Ben Cardin.
Senator Van Hollen says researchers will only test healthy people in the first phase. If the vaccine is safe, the second phase will include younger and older people. According to Congressman Jamie Raskin, it will take a year to a year and a half before it is made available to the public.
“The public investment that we have made in the past in NIH has made it possible for us to be where we are in getting a vaccine ready… in let us hope a year, which would be record time and it is because we made the investment in researchers, scientist, and doctors here at NIH,” said Congressman Jamie Raskin.
As of Friday 14 people in the US have died from the virus.