COVID-19 vaccine may keep numbers low
Desteny Maragh – Reporter
A preliminary analysis shows that the first effective coronavirus vaccine can prevent more than 90 percent of people from getting COVID-19. Some students at the unversity want to take it.
The developers, Pfizer and BioNTech, had described finishing the vaccine as a “great day for science and humanity.”
Mikael Dolsten, chief scientific officer, for Pfizer, said in an interview with Nordic Life Science; “We are sharing data from our COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials with the U.S. Federal Drug Administration in real time, so they can evaluate at the earliest possible time whether the safety and efficacy threshold has been met that would enable us to make the vaccine available.”
“We are working with an ambition to share the vaccine in a fair and equitable way across the globe for the people with the most urgent needs.
The vaccines are promising because of their potential for high potency and ability to boost immune responses, engaging several arms of the immune system, such as antibody-producing B cells and anti-viral T-cells,” said Dolsten.
Pfizer and BioNTech released only sparse details regarding its clinical trial, and much of the info was based on the first formal review of the data by an outside panel of experts.
The company said the analysis found that the vaccine was more than 90 percent effective in preventing the disease among those trial volunteers who had no evidence of prior coronavirus infection.
BBC health correspondent Laura Foster said a COVID-19 vaccination is “possibly the only way for things to get back to normal.”
Pfizer plans to ask the Food and Drug Administration for emergency authorization of the two-dose vaccine later this month, after it has collected the recommended two months’ worth of safety data.
Pfizer executive said by the end of the year, it will have manufactured enough doses to immunize 15 to 20 million people.
“The public health efforts, although significant, have so far not been able to substantially reduce the spread of the disease and a vast number of fatalities have occurred,” said Dolsten. “Knowing that, and with the number of COVID-19 cases increasing worldwide, a vaccine is likely the only way of eliminating the threat of ongoing pandemics.”
Students at the university said they are ready for COVID-19 to be a thing of the past, and they are ready for a vaccine to eliminate the pandemic.
“So many people have died from it,” said communications major Paige Herold, a freshman.
“The world as we know it has changed so much in so little time that it almost seems crazy that one vaccine can make everything go back to normal,” said Herold.
While debating if she would take a vaccine if presented with one, Herold was stuck on the idea for a while, bouncing between the options.
Herold decided that she would take a vaccine but only if it was approved by the government and had real chances of it working successfully.
Another student who said they would take the vaccine is studio art major Jayla Francis, a junior.
Francis said “90 percent is a chance of the vaccine working, I would take it right now.”
Public health major Brandon Jensen, a senior, also said he would take the vaccine.
Jensen said he’d do anything, even take a vaccine, if that meant “no more COVID.”
For Jensen, life has changed drastically during the pandemic because it has stopped his ability to visit family and friends living in other places.
Jensen said the main reason he would take the vaccine would be so he could visit his grandmother in Maine.
“It’s been such a long since I’ve seen my grandmother. She’s spent these past months in isolation and it’s pretty depressing knowing she’s alone,” said Jensen.
“A vaccine would give me the chance to see my grandma, so I’d take it immediately.”