UK To Start Rolling Out Covid-19 Vaccine Subsequent Week – .
The UK is expected to be the first western country to launch a Covid-19 vaccine after being approved for emergency use by the Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Authority (MHRA).
First doses of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine, which studies have shown to be 95% effective, will arrive in the UK in the coming days. The country has purchased 40 million total cans that will arrive gradually in 2020 and 2021. 800,000 should be available next week.
First, it prioritizes people in the most at risk category for vaccinations, including the elderly and those in nursing homes, as well as employees such as NHS workers.
The logistical challenges remain, including the need to keep the vaccine at -70 ° C. There are currently 50 hospitals ready to receive the bumps and specialist centers are being built, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said.
Hancock credited the Brexit process with allowing the country to approve the vaccine before the US and Europe, with the MHRA being given special authority prior to Britain’s official exit from the EU on January 1.
The news offers hope for a return to some semblance of pre-Covid normality in the first half of 2021. Coming events like the Berlinale (February 20 – March 1) remain precarious, with the vaccine impact in those first few months are unclear stage. The managing director of the Berlinale, Mariette Rissenbeek, said today that the festival was “currently testing the feasibility of the festival in February” while the lockdown measures in the country continue.