The vaccine is the only hope for the world to return to a normal life
How effective are the new COVID-19 vaccines? After what a tough year 2020 has been, Pfizer’s announcement of an effective COVID-19 vaccine was nothing less than a new hope. The announcement of a vaccine was seen as a hope towards the possibility of returning to how normal life once used to be before this pandemic.
As Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine has started rolling out in the UK, the same vaccine is moving closer towards getting approval from the hardest-hit market of the United States. The drug-maker Pfizer is getting approval by FDA and so far, the landscape seems favorable for the company.
An important question, however, arises regarding how effective and safe this vaccine is. In the history of medical science, the trials for the COVID-19 vaccine have been complete in a record time. This is a double-edged sword. As a result of this emergency development of the drug, it can save countless lives. but in case something was missed in the rush to produce it, it can easily take countless lives as well.
Here is what you need to know all about COVID-19 vaccines and their effectiveness:
In a race to develop the drug first, there are now around 100 COVID-19 vaccines under development. Let’s look at the top 3 in the current portfolio of the vaccines that are near development and their effectiveness.
Pfizer/ BionNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
It seems as Pfizer has won the race. Its vaccine has now been rolled out in the UK. And it is injecting into a great number of people now. The drug has been 95% successful in its phase 3 trials at preventing the illness. The drug is to be taken in form of two doses, three weeks apart. Storing this vaccine has challenges of its own. The drug needs to be stored at –70 degrees Celsius. The drug can only be removed from this temperature four times. When moved to a fridge (temperature between 2 to 8 degrees), its effective life is only up to 5 days.
Moderna is developing a vaccine of its own. Like Pfizer’s vaccine, this is developed on basis of mRNA technology. The vaccine is showing 94.6% effectiveness till now in its trials. It will require two doses, 28 days apart to be effective. The vaccine will be available in the market around spring 2021.
AstraZeneca/ Oxford University
Another drug close to the finish line by AstraZeneca and Oxford University is under development. The drug is currently in its Phase 3 clinical trial. And it is expected to be rolled out by the end of the year. Up till now, the drug is showing up to 90% effectiveness in preventing the disease.
Is Corona Vaccine Reliable?
The question remains about the effectiveness and reliability of these vaccines. Another important question is regarding how long the protection lasts. Still, a lot of information is missing. As to what will be its effect on children younger than 12 years and pregnant women.
Both Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines use mRNA technology and these will be the first ones of this technology to be ever licensed.
As we see it, the hard winter is still in store for the global population. It is yet to be seen how effective are current COVID-19 vaccines.