First use of coronavirus vaccines cannot be expected until early 2021: WHO expert

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Updated: Jul 23, 2020, 09:59 AM(IST)

Representative image Photograph:( Reuters )

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“Realistically it is going to be the first part of next year before we start seeing people getting vaccinated,” he told a public event on social media.

Researchers around the world are making "good progress" in developing a vaccine against coronavirus and a very few have made it to the late-stage trials, however, a World Health Organization expert has said that their first use cannot be expected until early 2021. 

Also read: US to pay Pfizer, BioNTech $1.95 billion for COVID-19 vaccine

Mike Ryan, head of WHO’s emergencies programme, has said that the organization is ensuring a fair vaccine distribution, but in the meantime, it is key to suppress the virus’s spread. 

“We’re making good progress,” Ryan said, noting that several vaccines were now in phase 3 trials and none had failed, so far, in terms of safety or ability to generate an immune response.

“Realistically it is going to be the first part of next year before we start seeing people getting vaccinated,” he told a public event on social media.

According to Ryan, WHO was working to expand access to potential vaccines and to help scale-up production capacity. 

“And we need to be fair about this, because this is a global good. Vaccines for this pandemic are not for the wealthy, they are not for the poor, they are for everybody,” he said.

Ryan has asked the schools to be cautious while re-opening the schools and urged them to wait until community transmission of Covid-19 is under control. The debate in the United States over restarting education has intensified, even as the pandemic flares up in dozens of states.

“We have to do everything possible to bring our children back to school, and the most effective thing we can do is to stop the disease in our community,” he said. “Because if you control the disease in the community, you can open the schools.”

(Inputs from Reuters)

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