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Should This Non-mRNA Vaccine Have Been Authorized Early in the Pandemic? (Guest: Raymond March)

November 12, 2022

Early in the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. government decided to focus on mRNA vaccines over traditional ones. Was this a mistake?

COVID Vaccines

The FDA recently gave emergency use authorization (EUA) to the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine. Unlike the vaccines Americans received as a result of Operation Warp Speed, Novavax is not an mRNA vaccine. It was bypassed for EUA early in the pandemic because of a decision to put all resources into mRNA vaccines as it was thought this provided the best approach to get a vaccine out quickly.

Our guest today, Raymond March, a research fellow for the Independent Institute and assistant professor of agribusiness and applied economics at North Dakota State University, says this was a costly mistake. In an op-ed, March explains why it took so long for the U.S. to get access to the Novavax vaccine. March discusses Novavax’s different technology, the history of protein-based vaccines, and the dangers in using a one-size-fits-all approach when dealing with a public health threat. 

Novavax Authorization:,-Adjuvanted-as-a-Booster-for-Adults


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AnneMarie Schieber is a research fellow at The Heartland Institute and managing editor of Health Care News, Heartland's monthly newspaper for health care reform. @HCPolicy