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Everything You Need to Know about Pfizer's Covid Vaccine

In the News


How many doses of the vaccine has the UK bought?

+ UK has secured 40m doses, with 10m due by the end of the year

+ 800k doses available next week

+ Patients need two doses, so there are only enough doses for around a third of Britain

How long does it protect you for?

+ Regulators said there was evidence of 'partial immunity' just seven days after the first dose

+ The best immunity comes seven days after the second dose, which is given three weeks after the first

How will a vaccine be rolled out?

+ Nightingale Hospitals and sports stadiums have been prepared as sites for mass vaccination clinics

+ Matt Hancock: '50 hospitals across the country are already set up and waiting to receive the vaccine'

What are the advantages of this type of vaccine?

+ No actual virus is needed to create an mRNA vaccine

+ This means it can be produced much quicker

+ In theory, they can also be modified quickly if a virus develops mutations

Are there any downsides?

+ One downside is that mRNA vaccines need to be stored at ultra-cold temperatures

+ Pfizer's Covid vaccine must be stored at minus 70C — about four times colder than a household freezer

Are they safe?

+ All vaccines undergo rigorous testing and have oversight from experienced regulators

+ Some believe mRNA vaccines are safer for the patient

How much does it cost?

+ Pfizer/BioNTech is making its vaccine not-for-profit

+ The Moderna vaccine could cost about £28 per dose and the Pfizer candidate could cost around £15

+ The Oxford vaccine could be relatively cheap to produce

How has this come about so quickly?

+ Traditionally vaccines can take years to research and develop

+ The timetable for developing and approving a Covid vaccine has been condensed due to the coronavirus crisis

But won’t that mean that safety is compromised?

+ Safety checks have still been the same as for any new medicine

+ In most clinical trials, any issues are usually identified in the first three months – a period which has already lapsed

How are regulators acting so quickly?

+ Regulators have been carrying out 'rolling reviews'

+ This means regulators can start to look at scientific data earlier than they traditionally would do

2 months ago
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