Fauci: U.S. could begin distributing COVID vaccine by end of year

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FILE PHOTO: Fauci, Redfield testify at U.S. Senate hearing on coronavirus response in Washington
FILE PHOTO: Fauci, Redfield testify at U.S. Senate hearing on coronavirus response in Washington

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, on Monday greeted news about the vaccine against the deadly coronavirus that Pfizer Inc is developing as "a big deal" and said the United States could have vaccine doses ready to administer to people before the end of the year.

In an interview with CNN, Fauci said he believes he will stay in his current role for the time being and he has no intention of leaving. President Donald Trump, who is attempting to contest his apparent loss in last week's presidential election to Democrat Joe Biden in the courts, has publicly criticized Fauci and has not spoken to the country's leader on fighting infectious diseases since early October, according to Fauci.

(Reporting by Lisa Lambert; Editing by Leslie Adler)