Covid-19 vaccine updates: UK to purchase over 350 mn doses, US likely to see vaccine roll out before Dec end

The total number of cases due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) disease across the globe have mounted over 63 million with 1,465,024 deaths and more than 43.5 million recoveries , according to Worldometer figures.

Countries such as the United Kingdom (UK), Germany and Poland have been seeing a fall in coronavirus cases which is perhaps due the recent restrictions imposed by their governments.

The United States- which continues to be the worst-hit nation from the pandemic might see a major surge in infections post the Thanksgiving holiday. American Physician Anthony Fauci told CNN this surge might happen in two or three weeks.

Organisations- both at the private and government level are rushing towards developing a full-proof vaccine to combat Covid-19 with minimum or no side effects.

Also Read: Dr Fauci warns Americans to brace for ‘surge upon surge’ of coronavirus

The UK is poised to become the first country to approve the vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE. The government had already indicated that it would move fast on any promising vaccine candidate and British doctors have been put on standby for a possible roll out before Christmas.

Meanwhile, Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer said on Sunday that $30 billion in federal funds was required to distribute vaccine adding that New York alone would need “hundreds of millions” for the vaccine’s distribution and education work .

Here the latest updates on the vaccine to combat Covid-19: 

1. The UK has agreed to purchase over 350 million doses of vaccines from seven different producers as it prepares to vaccinate as many of the population as possible. The department of health said on Sunday that it had increased its order for vaccine developed by Moderna from 5 million to 7 million doses.

2. Top infectious disease specialists in the United States said vaccines would likely roll out in the country before the end of December. US Surgeon General Jerome Adams added Pfizer is scheduled to submit an Emergency Use Authorization request on December 10 followed by Moderna on December 18.

Also Read: New York City to reopen schools, even as Covid spread intensifies

3. An internal memo of the New York City Fire Department stated that first vaccines available to some of New York City’s first responders could be distributed in a few weeks. The memo sent to emergency medical technicians (EMTs), paramedics and firefighters added vaccinations ‘will potentially begin in mid-late December’ pending FDA approval, according to the NBC.

4. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will interact with three teams- Gennova Biopharma, Biological E and Dr Reddy’s, which are involved in developing the coronavirus vaccine on Monday. This comes after the Prime Minister visited Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Pune on Saturday to review development and manufacturing of vaccines at Zydus Cadila, Bharat Biotech and Serum Institute of India (SII).

5. The Serum Institute said it plans to file a lawsuit seeking damages worth Rs 100 crore from a 40-year-old man who claimed he developed serious side-effects in the human trials that the SII conducted on vaccine candidate Covishield.

(With agency inputs)

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