Russia claimed the vaccine provides stable immunity from coronavirus but critics say they skipped steps in clinical testing.
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Russia claims that it has developed the world’s 1st Covid-19 vaccine and approved it for public use after just 2 months of clinical trials.
The Sputnik-V vaccine, named after the world’s first satellite launched by the Soviet Union, developed by Moscow’s Gamaleya Institute, is said to be effective and provides “stable immunity” from the coronavirus.
Russian President Vladimir Putin even claimed that one of his 2 daughters had taken part in the experiment to test the vaccine and was inoculated with Sputnik-V.
Putin said that 2 separate injections were provided which caused his daughter to develop a brief fever before feeling “normal” again.
Apparently, Russia plans to push the vaccine for public use in October 2020, and it’s said that several countries as well as private pharmaceutical companies have shown interest in Sputnik-V.
However, the international medical community remains skeptical of the safety and effectiveness of Russia’s vaccine.
Reportedly, Sputnik-V was developed without following established guidelines with Russia failing to provide any scientific data on its testing.
Clinical trials are essential research to study and evaluate the effects of medical treatments on human health and are conducted carefully, usually over an extensive period.
The World Health Organization (WHO) outlines 4 phases of the clinical trial process according to international standards;
- Phase 1: New drugs, or in this case vaccines, are tested for the first time on a small group of people to determine a safe dosage and identify side effects.
- Phase 2: After passing the 1st phase, tests are now done on a larger group of people to monitor side effects.
- Phase 3: Testing is done on a large population, in different regions or countries before approval.
- Phase 4: Studies are done after a country has approved the vaccine, testing a wide population over a longer period.
According to WHO, currently, there are 6 different Covid-19 vaccines that have entered Phase 3 of trials with no guarantees that they would work, and Russia has reportedly skipped the step in trials for Sputnik-V before approving it.
Globally, there are over 100 vaccines for Covid-19 in early development with experts being quoted as saying that a viable one might take years, even decades to be successfully produced and distributed.
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