Dolly Parton’s dulcet tones and memorable tunes may help mend broken hearts, but it seems that the singer may have a hand in providing the world some COVID-19 relief.
As news of two potential COVID-19 vaccines entered the conversation, information about the new Moderna vaccine’s supporters came to light. Last Thursday, the Christmas on the Square star’s name appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine’s report on the new vaccine, referring to a donation the singer had provided the Vanderbilt University Medical Center for its coronavirus research efforts back in April. Among the additional donors were Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation, National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences and National Institutes of Health, Bethesda.
“Back when we started the fund, I was just hoping we might find some cures or whatever, but now it looks like it might be happening and I’m just very grateful that this is happening,” the pop culture icon told Hoda Kotb of her donation on Tuesday during the Today show. “If I had anything to do with it, then that’s great.”
The Parton-backed vaccine from Moderna touts a 94.5% effectiveness, surpassing that of Pfizer’s 90%.
During the Today interview Parton said that she had just learned about the Moderna news and her how her contributions paid forward. She also told Kotb that she doesn’t identify as either Republican or Democrat, noting that she’s a “hippo-crat” who hopes to stay out of other people’s business. However, the singer said if she’s able to help in any way she’d like to.
“[I] do what good I can I my own little world, doing it the best way I know how,” Parton added.
Watch the Today clip below.