SRINAGAR: The UK has become the first country to approve Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for widespread use, a landmark move which will see the drug made available from next week.
The development follows trial results made public in mid-November showing the vaccine, produced by US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech, had a 95-percent success rate and caused no serious side effects.
Although India will have to wait a little longer as it is yet to get approvals for vaccines. It will be either Oxford-AstraZeneca which is tested by the Serum Institute of India (SII) or the Russian vaccine Sputnik-V tested in India by Dr. Reddy’s Lab.
The vaccine has been the only hope for the past many months as the coronavirus turns a year old. Currently, there are many vaccine candidates in the race including Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Oxford-AstraZeneca, Russia, and China. But, does everyone need to get vaccinated once the COVID-19 vaccine is available for mass use? Pfizer scientist says no.
Who all need COVID-19 Vaccine?
Pfizer ex-scientist Dr. Michael Yeadon distinctly said that there is absolutely no need for a vaccine to end the COVID-19 pandemic. He said that we should vaccinate people who are not at risk of contracting the said disease. “You do not vaccinate people who aren’t at risk from the disease. You also don’t set about planning to vaccinate millions of fit and healthy people with a vaccine that hasn’t been extensively tested on human subjects,” Yeadon wrote for Lockdown Sceptics.
In fact, the Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan on Tuesday said that the Indian government has never spoken about vaccinating the entire country. “If we’re able to vaccinate a critical mass of people & break virus transmission, then we may not have to vaccinate the entire population,” ICMR DG Dr. Balram Bhargava added.
“Govt has never spoken about vaccinating the entire country,” says Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan
“If we’re able to vaccinate a critical mass of people & break virus transmission, then we may not have to vaccinate the entire population,” ICMR DG Dr Balram Bhargava added.
He further added, “Vaccination would depend on the efficacy of the vaccine & our purpose is to break the chain of #COVID19 transmission. If we’re able to vaccinate the critical mass of people & break virus transmission, then we may not have to vaccinate the entire population.”
However, it is still not known whether the Pfizer-BioNTech shots, estimated to cost about $20 per dose, can stop people infected with the novel coronavirus from spreading it to others.
It also remains to be seen how long the vaccine’s effect will last.
While it’s still soon to say when we will be able to beat the pandemic, the news of vaccines coming-in definitely ignites a ray of hope. You might not be one of those who would need a vaccine but that doesn’t mean you will never be able to contract the virus. Until we get a permanent solution to this, let’s keep following the safety precautions and help each other in fighting the COVID battle!
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