The program will have two separate pillars: to expand the study capacities with regard to discovering the virus, as well as expanding production capacities so that it can eventually be produced.
“As soon as a vaccine is found and approved, production must start quickly,” Federal Research Minister Anja Karliczek (CDU) said on Monday, as reported the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ).
“A vaccine is a key to returning to normal.”
Karliczek said that while the funding package is significant, she does not expect a vaccine to be available until mid-2021 at the earliest.
“We cannot expect miracles. It is important to be realistic.”
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The program has been designed to secure a result faster than usual, by allowing studies with a larger number of subjects.
The Minister indicated in a press conference on Monday that the department will develop a set of funding guidelines through which researchers can apply for the funds.
Recognising the need to complement rather than compete with international vaccine efforts, Karliczek said approximately a third of the funding will go to Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, the international vaccine allance organisation.
The “special and unique program” is the largest of its kind in German history undertaken by the Federal Ministry.
The vaccine: (der) Impfstoff
The Federal Research Minister (female): die Bundesforschungsministerin
The researchers: (die) Forscher
Risk groups: (die) Risikogruppen
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