Despite ‘promising’ results in Pfizer’s coronavirus trial, Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s spokesman has warned that there are ‘no guarantees’ the vaccine will be approved by UK regulators.
Pfizer and their partner BioNTech have announced that their experimental Covid-19 vaccine is more than 90 percent effective in combating the virus. The statement from the pharmaceutical giant provides hope that the first coronavirus vaccine could be rolled out before Christmas.
However, dampening hopes, the UK prime minister’s spokesman warned that they did not have a final date for when it would be approved and that, while “the results are promising,” the country has “to remember there are no guarantees.”
Although, he did state that, if the vaccine is proven to be safe and effective, “the NHS stands ready to begin a vaccination program.”
Downing Street has revealed that the government has ordered 40 million doses of the vaccine, with 10 million “available to the UK by the end of the year if the vaccine is approved by the regulators.”
For the vaccine to be successful, each person will need to receive two doses, which would mean that the initial order could help up to 5 million people in the UK.
Any vaccine made available in the UK would be given to care home residents and staff first and people over the age of 80 and NHS staff second, according to guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization.
England is currently in the middle of a second national lockdown, Wales has just completed a firebreak lockdown and begun a new set of regulations and Scotland has a five-level system of restrictions designed to slow the spread of the virus.
On Sunday, the UK reported 20,572 new cases and 156 deaths, taking the total number of infections to 1,171,445 and fatalities to 48,888.
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