It’s true that COVID-19 vaccines were developed more quickly than most previous vaccines, but their development built upon many prior decades of work.

The process included the same rigorous safety reviews that are required for all new vaccines. Researchers were able to develop the vaccines quickly, safely, and effectively because the urgency of the pandemic created greater access to research funding, reduced bureaucratic obstacles, and encouraged unparalleled levels of government and industry cooperation.

As new variants appear, vaccine researchers will continue to update COVID-19 vaccines to provide the highest level of protection against the virus.

Updated December 14, 2023