The UK is going to approve a COVID-19 vaccine which, according to drugmakers, is effective in fighting the new variant of the coronavirus around the world.
AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot told the Sunday Times that the vaccine is just as effective as the 95 percent success rate by rival drug developers. However, concerns have been expressed about preliminary partial test results suggesting that the AstraZeneca shot is only about 70 percent effective in preventing COVID-19.
The new survey by AstraZeneca and Oxford University is easier to transport and store, potentially giving the country another powerful tool to fight infection rates there, three weeks after the UK became the first western country to be vaccinated started.
The vaccine could be approved by UK drug regulators this week and made available to the public in the first week of January.
“We think we have established the winning formula and how to get effectiveness that is after two doses with everyone else there,” Soriot told the newspaper. “I can ‘t tell you anymore because we’ll be publishing sometime.”
Commenting on the effectiveness of the vaccine against the new British mutation, Soriot told the Times: ‘So far we think the vaccine should remain effective. But we can not be sure, so we’re going to test it. ”
Hospitals in the UK are increasingly tense as the country recorded more than 30,000 positive COVID-19 tests and 316 deaths due to the virus on Sunday, bringing its death toll to 70,752.
By Christmas Eve, British health officials said more than 600,000 had received the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine.
Widespread travel restrictions and public closures could be eased by the end of February if the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine is quickly approved and distributed to a threshold of 15 million of the UK’s most vulnerable citizens, according to a report in the Mirror.
Britain pre-ordered 100 million doses of the drug.
With AP wires