The World Health Organization has said it does not expect widespread vaccinations against coronavirus until the middle of next year, stressing the importance of rigorous checks on their effectiveness and safety.
“We are not expecting to see widespread vaccination until the middle of next year,” spokeswoman Margaret Harris told journalists at a briefing in Geneva.
“This phase 3 must take longer because we need to see how truly protective the vaccine is and we also need to see how safe it is,” she added referring to vaccine clinical trials.
Russia’s “Sputnik-V” COVID-19 vaccine produced an antibody response in all participants in early-stage trials, according to results published by The Lancet medical journal.
The results of the two trials, conducted in June-July this year and involving 76 participants, showed 100% of participants developing antibodies to the new coronavirus and no serious side effects, The Lancet said.
Russia licensed the two-shot jab for domestic use in August, the first country to do so and before any data had been published or a large-scale trial begun.
“The two 42-day trials * including 38 healthy adults each * did not find any serious adverse effects among participants, and confirmed that the vaccine candidates elicit an antibody response,” The Lancet said.
“Large, long-term trials including a placebo comparison, and further monitoring are needed to establish the long-term safety and effectiveness of the vaccine for preventing COVID-19 infection,” it said.
Source: The Guardian