The United Kingdom is the first western country to authorize a coronavirus vaccine. The country announced the decision on December 2 when emergency regulators approved the vaccine manufactured by United States pharmaceutical company Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech.
“Help is on the way,” Health Secretary Matt Hancock shared with Britain. Phase 3 trials of the vaccine showed it was 95% effective in preventing the coronavirus. It’s one highlight in what has been a long pandemic that’s killed over 1.5 million people around the world.
“We believe it is really the start of the end of the pandemic,” BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin told CNN and Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla called the emergency authorization “a historic moment in the fight against Covid-19.” 40 million doses of the vaccine have been ordered in the UK, enough for 20 million people.
In the UK, the priority list for vaccines is the elderly in nursing homes and those that care for them, all those that are 80 and older, frontline healthcare workers, and then down in age ranges. Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the news “fantastic” and said in a press conference, “we are no longer resting on the mere hope that we can return to normal next year in the spring, but rather on the sure and certain knowledge that we will succeed, and together reclaim our lives.”
Scientists believe that the spread of COVID-19, or coronavirus, started at an exotic animal market in Wuhan, China. You can help stop the incidence of viruses like these by signing this petition to ban the wildlife trade.
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