Brazil: Was it a mistake to rely on Chinese vaccines?

Edited By: Gravitas desk WION
New Delhi Published: Apr 13, 2021, 02:25 AM(IST)

Representative image Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

Brazil was banking on Chinese vaccine Sinovac

Brazil's healthcare system has collapsed due to coronavirus. This Sunday, Brazil recorded more than 1800 deaths. The total death toll so far is more than 353,000. And the Brazilian variant is targetting the youth as well. There are more young people in ICUs of hospitals than old. The number of people under 40 surpassed the number of old.

Brazil was banking on Chinese vaccine Sinovac. However, a local study has found that this shot has an efficacy of just 50.7 per cent. The efficacy is barely over the threshold needed for regulatory approval by the WHO.

China, just for a short while, also admitted that its vaccines aren't good enough. The top disease control official of China Gao Fu, said current Chinese vaccines offer lower protection.

But on Monday, he walked back from this statement. And the state media went into overdrive to defend the Chinese shots. Reports say China is now considering mixing two different vaccines to boost their power.

The idea is not new. There are others who are exploring this possibility. The UK is conducting a trial to check, if one person can get two doses of different vaccines.

In France, the health regulator has already allowed mixing of vaccine shots. Those under the age of 55, who received the AstraZeneca vaccine first can take either the Pfizer or Moderna jab for their second dose.

Germany is following a similar policy. Health experts generally agree that mixing vaccines shouldn't be a problem. It's an approach that has been tried before with Influenza and ebola shots.

But scientists need more data to be sure if different Wuhan virus vaccines can indeed work together.

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