- United Kingdon has cleared the AstraZeneca – Oxford Vaccine for new strain of the virus
- Britain has ordered 100 million (10 crore) doses of the vaccine already
- The vaccine has been approved for emergency supply
On Wednesday, the United Kingdom became the first country around the globe to have approved the COVID-19 vaccine developed by the Oxford University in collaboration with AstraZeneca as it goes on war against a major major winter surge driven by the new and the highly contagious variant of the novel Coronavirus.
The pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca said that the authorisation given by the UK was for a two dose regime, and added that the vaccine had also been approved for use for the emergency supply.
Britain has already ordered 100 million (10 crore) doses of the vaccine.
The Health Ministry said, “The government has today accepted the recommendation from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to authorise Oxford University/AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine for use”.
The novel Coronavirus has caused 1.7 million (17 lakh) fatilities around the glow and not to forget has sown chaos through the global economy and overturned the normal life for billions of people since it began in Wuhan, China, a year ago.
The new strain of the COVID-19 is grappling two nations in particular – UK and South Africa – which the government and scientists have claimed to be far more contagious and in turn several countries, including India, are now banning passenger flights and even blocking trade with them.
Several developers including AstraZeneca have said that they are currently studying the impact of this new variant of COVID-19 and expect that their shots will be effective against it.
Having said this, the regulatory endorsement is a huge boost for AstraZeneca and the team at the OxfordUniversity, which have been accused of a lack of clarity about the results from their late-stage trials of the vaccine.
The pooled results from those trials showed that the vaccine had an overall efficacy of 70.4%. Its efficacy was 62% for the trial participants who were given two full doses, however, it was 90% for a smaller sub-group given a half, then a full dose.
Several Researchers have come out and said that the findings claiming the there is a 90% efficacy for the low-dose/ high-dose regime needs more investigation.
AstraZeneca did not specify which dose regime had been approved.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of AstraZeneca, Pascal Soriot, said, “Today is an important day for millions of people in the UK who will get access to this new vaccine.” He added, “It has been shown to be effective, well-tolerated, simple to administer and is supplied by AstraZeneca at no profit.”