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What is Operation Warp Speed?

On May 15, 2020, the Operation Warp Speed (OWS) program was announced by the US government to facilitate and accelerate the development and distribution of Covid-19 vaccines in the US. In the months that followed, not one, not two, but three vaccines were produced in record time.

OWS was an unprecedented medical achievement, but for many Americans, the speed at which these vaccines were developed plays a major role in their hesitancy to get vaccinated. 

Rambod Rouhbakhsh, MD, the principal investigator at Hattiesburg Clinic MediSync ® Clinical Research, spoke with WHLT and Mississippi Public Broadcasting (MPB) about the decline in vaccination rates and stated that maybe “Operation Warp Speed” wasn’t the best name for the Covid-19 vaccine distribution process.

“I think some of the vocabulary we have used, like Warp Speed, may have played a role in making people hesitant to get this vaccine,” Rouhbakhsh said. “The actual definition of Warp Speed is the government efforts to fund these vaccines to be studied and then distributed.” 

Rouhbakhsh proclaimed that no steps were skipped on testing for the safety and efficacy of the vaccine. The processes at which the vaccines were made have been developed and tested for decades. 

“While the mRNA technology has just been recently put to use on a national scale, mRNA vaccines have been studied for the last 10 to 15 years,” Rouhbakhsh said. “This is an example of chance favoring the prepared mind.”

“Hundreds of millions of Americans have had these vaccines and little in the way of complications. They’re safe, they’re effective, and they will help the entire society recover from this and get back to normal,” Rouhbakhsh said.

Follow the links to listen the full interview: 

WJTV: https://www.wjtv.com/pine-belt-news/mississippians-still-hesitant-to-get-vaccinated/

MISSISSIPPI PUBLIC BROADCASTING/MISSISSIPPI EDITION: http://mississippiedition.mpbonline.org/episodes/51121-decline-in-vaccination-rates-board-vacancies-hurricane

Tate Rutland

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