UK rollout of Covid vaccine could start before Christmas - (The Guardian via NewsPoints Desk)

  • The UK could start distributing a COVID-19 vaccine by Christmas, deputy chief medical officer Jonathan Van-Tam said as he and Prime Minister Boris Johnson hailed "a significant scientific breakthrough," reported The Guardian.

  • "I'm hopeful…but not yet certain that we could begin to see some vaccine by Christmas," Van-Tam remarked after data from a large-scale trial showed Pfizer and partner BioNTech's vaccine candidate was more than 90% effective. 

  • Van-Tam suggested the progress was also significant for other vaccines in development, as "almost all of the vaccines coming also target the [virus'] S protein."

  • He indicated that older people would be first in line for the vaccination, with prioritisation decided by an independent committee.

  • He also noted it was still unclear what effect a vaccine would have on transmission, saying "once these vaccines begin to be deployed, then over a period of time they will make a significant difference to the kind of disease level we see in the UK at moment."

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