Tags: Coronavirus | worldhealthorganization | russia | vaccine | covid

Russia's Coronavirus Vaccine Excluded from WHO Vaccine Candidate List

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Thomas Hansler, 54, receives a COVID-19 vaccination at the Research Centers of America in Hollywood, Florida on August 13, 2020. (Chandan Khanna /AFP via Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 14 August 2020 05:54 PM

Russia was the first country to approve a coronavirus vaccine, even though no final stage testing has proved its effectiveness or safety, according to BGR.

Now, the World Health Organization is excluding the Russian vaccine from its list of nine coronavirus vaccine candidates that have reached advanced-stage testing.

“We don’t have sufficient information at this point to make a judgment,” Dr. Bruce Aylward, senior adviser to WHO’s director-general, told First Post. “We’re currently in conversation with Russia to get additional information to understand the status of that product, the trials that have been undertaken, and then what the next steps might be.”

President Vladimir Putin approved the drug earlier this week, saying it can protect people for up to two years from coronavirus. He didn't, however, provide any scientific evidence to back up that claim.

Since coronavirus is so new to the world stage, no scientist can estimate the length of time a vaccine could provide immunity from coronavirus.

WHO and its partners included nine experimental COVID-19 drugs that are in advanced testing in its Covax initiative. That’s an investment mechanism the WHO is encouraging countries to join so that they can obtain early access to vaccines. Funding for developing countries would also be raised through this initiative.

Russian officials even offered help to the United States in developing a vaccine, but the gesture was rejected.

But an unnamed Russian official said the United States should “seriously consider adopting” their vaccine.

“If our vaccine proves to be one of the most effective, questions will be asked why the US did not explore this option any deeper, why politics got in the way of access to a vaccine,” the Russian official said.

“They have enough disease now in Russia that they could conduct clinical trials, but they don’t appear to have done that at a large enough scale,” a US government adviser told CNN. “There have been no trials of this vaccine. They’ve done too little work on humans to decide if it works on a larger scale. We’re talking totally inadequate safety data.”

An unnamed former senior US administration official called Russia's vaccine “a joke." The source added that China is a lot closer to coming up with a vaccine because it's following the same standards as the United States and other western countries.

“China is very much wanting to join the world of normal response and regulation, and they are trying to do that,” the source told CNN. Unlike Russia, China did share vaccine research data for several candidates, showing the experimental drug worked as intended in the first stages of tests. Chinese officials also said the country is considering administering vaccines to some people even before Phase 3 results are ready.

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Russia was the first country to approve a coronavirus vaccine, even though no final stage testing has proved its effectiveness or safety...
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Friday, 14 August 2020 05:54 PM
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