Not long ago, in March this year, soon after Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla penned down a partnership with BioNTech to create a COVID-19 vaccine, researchers told him that the project might not be complete until mid-2021.
His response?? “Sorry, this will not work… People are dying”, as recounted by the Wall Street Journal.
Well, his urgency surely expedited the vaccine timeline, and the rest is history as Pfizer has already started administering doses from Monday last.
Mike Mcdermott, Pfizer’s global manufacturing operation head, told Bourla early in the pandemic, “What we’re doing is already a miracle.” But Bourla thought differently and managed to increase the production by 10x.
This pressure resulted in finding and manufacturing the vaccine in record time. Vaccine production started in mid-August, and by November, Pfizer’s production capacity had already reached 50 million doses.
Though the target was half of what Bourla actually set, there’s no room for doubt that it’s a massive achievement, given such a process usually takes a decade to bear fruit.