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Screenshot: Axios Events

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson says "this is not necessarily the time to take everything slowly" when it comes to the Trump administration's approach to getting vaccines and treatments to the public.

Why it matters: Carson's comments, made Wednesday during an Axios virtual event, came days after the Food and Drug Administration announced an emergency use authorization (EUA) for treating the coronavirus with convalescent plasma. President Trump accused the agency of slow-walking the development and approval of vaccines and therapeutics to hurt him politically.

What Carson's saying: "That is the time to maximize your resources—not to skips steps—but to move expeditiously. And if you have something that you know is safe or relatively safe and you have evidence that it's very effective, it would behoove you to move forward with testing."

  • "Rather than just leave that process languishing, I think what the president is saying is 'Look folks, this is not normal times. We need to move forward. We can't just sit and lollygag at a time like that.'"
  • "You have to recognize we want to open the economy back up. We want people to stop being afraid of everything. And that will happen when we have some effective therapies, when we have an effective vaccine. So we certainly don't want to impede or slow down that process. We only want to speed that process up."

Go deeper: What it's like to give convalescent plasma

Watch the event.

Go deeper

Top HHS spokesperson pitched coronavirus ad campaign as "helping the president"

Michael Caputo. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

In September, Health and Human Services spokesperson Michael Caputo privately pitched one branch of the agency's $250 million coronavirus ad campaign with the theme: "Helping the President will Help the Country," according to documents released by House Democrats on the Oversight Committee on Thursday.

Why it matters: These are the latest documents that suggest the deep politicization of the Trump administration's coronavirus response.

10 hours ago - Health

Coronavirus surge threatens to shut classrooms down again

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The nationwide surge in coronavirus cases is forcing many school districts to pull back from in-person instruction.

Why it matters: Remote learning is a burden on parents, teachers and students. But the wave of new infections, and its strain on some hospitals' capacity, makes all forms of reopening harder to justify.