Last Friday, amidst all the heat, hype, and big bucks that greeted even the most modest advances in Covid-19 vaccine development in the United States, a far more sober assessment came from our friends across the pond: “Why We May Not Get a Coronavirus Vaccine.”

Evidently British restraint, coupled with Boris Johnson’s tangle with Covid, has infused a dose of reality into the country’s expectations of what a Covid vaccine might and might not do. This is a reality check for which the American government is long overdue.

To repeat my own warnings on the subject, the question we must reckon with is not when, but if we will find a Covid vaccine that is safe and effective for everyone. If we acknowledge the reality that the vaccines currently being tested might fail or protect only some of us, what policy choices can our lawmakers and elected officials enact now that will ensure our protection no matter the outcome?

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Originally posted on Forbes (May 26, 2020)