Dolly Parton's Research Fund Helped Create a COVID-19 Vaccine

Dolly Parton's Research Fund Helped Create a COVID-19 Vaccine
Photo: Sharon Steele
Country music angel Dolly Parton has been revealed as an unexpected saviour in the race to find a vaccine for COVID-19.

Earlier this week, Moderna announced its vaccine appears to be 94.5 percent effective according to preliminary studies, putting the company in the lead after Pfizer announced its own 90 percent effective vaccine last week.

And, as it turns out, the Moderna vax was partially supported by the Dolly Parton COVID-19 Research Fund, in partnership with Vanderbilt University.

Back in April, Parton announced she would be donating $1 million USD to the university after chatting with her friend — and father to the Dolly Parton's America podcast host, Jad Abumrad — Dr. Naji Abumrad. The pair were first acquainted when Abumrad tended to Parton after she was injured in a car accident in 2013.

"My longtime friend Dr. Naji Abumrad, who's been involved in research at Vanderbilt for many years, informed me that they were making some exciting advancements towards that research of the coronavirus for a cure," Parton wrote at the time.

"I am making a donation of $1 million to Vanderbilt towards that research and to encourage people that can afford it to make donations," she pledged. 

So far, there has been no announcement concerning a widespread rollout plan for the vaccine. Despite the positive outcome of recent trials, we may still be months away from getting access to a coronavirus cure.