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Will a Covid-19 jab be ready by Christmas? 'Small chance', Oxford vaccine trial chief says

A woman holds a small bottle labeled with a Coronavirus vaccine sticker and a medical syringe in this illustration. (REUTERS)Premium
A woman holds a small bottle labeled with a Coronavirus vaccine sticker and a medical syringe in this illustration. (REUTERS)

  • The vaccine developed by the Oxford University could present late-stage trial results before the year end but it is not yet clear if it will be rolled out before Christmas, the Oxford vaccine trial chief said
  • 'I'm optimistic that we could reach that point before the end of this year,' Pollard stated

Asked if the coronavirus vaccine would be ready before Christmas, chief trial investigator for the Oxford vaccine Andrew Pollard said on Wednesday: "There is a small chance."

The coronavirus vaccine developed by the Oxford University could present late-stage trial results before the year end but it is not yet clear if it will be rolled out before Christmas, the Oxford vaccine trial chief said.

"I'm optimistic that we could reach that point before the end of this year," news agency Reuters quoted Pollard as saying.

Pollard's remarks came shortly after Kate Bingham, the Britain Vaccine Taskforce Chief agreed that the coronavirus vaccine could be ready before Christmas.

Speaking to the BBC, Bingham said: "If the first two vaccines, or either of them, show that they are both safe and effective, I think there is a possibility that vaccine roll out will start this side of Christmas, but otherwise I think it's more realistic to expect it to be early next year."

NHS England on vaccine roll-out before Christmas

In case one of the candidates is ready by December, the National Health Service in England is gearing up to start distributing possible coronavirus vaccines before Christmas, according to the head of the state-run NHS.

"There are over two hundred vaccines in development... we should hopefully get one or more of those available, certainly from the first part of next year," BBC radio quoted Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England, as saying.

"But in anticipation of that, we're also gearing the NHS up to be ready to make a start on administering COVID vaccines before Christmas if they become available," Stevens added.

Meanwhile, the overall number of global Covid-19 cases has topped 47.3 million, while the death toll have surged to over 1,211,990.

As of today morning, the total caseload and deaths stood at 47,320,376 and 1,211,996, respectively.


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