COVID-19 Coronavirus vaccine: when will it be ready?
This might be good news: The World Health Organization said on March 18 that the first vaccine trial for the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 has already started.
The trial started 60 days after China shared the genetic sequence of the said virus, said Dr. Tedros Adhanom, the head of WHO.
The head, however, did not disclose where the trial is being held.
Health officials, however, said that while it may be good news that the trial has already commenced, it is going to take around 12 to 18 months for a vaccine to be released to the public.
He further praised experts in different parts of the globe who, according to him, are systematically evaluating “experimental therapeutics” in a bit to combat this deadly virus.
“Multiple small trials with different methodologies may not give us the clear, strong evidence we need about which treatments help to save lives,” said Adhanom.
At the moment, the WHO along with its partners are organizing a study in countries for what is deemed “solidarity trial” that includes Bahrain, Argentina, Canada, Iran, France, Norway, Spain, South Africa, Thailand, and Switzerland.
While he said that the WHO is aware that a lot of countries “now face escalating epidemics and are feeling overwhelmed,” he noted there is still hope.
He also recommended that countries across the globe should do physical distancing measures, such as canceling concerts, sporting events, and other large gatherings that could help contain the deadly virus.
He added that countries should isolate, test, treat, and trace to control as well as suppress epidemics.
He further noted that the backbone of the response in every country should be isolating, testing and treating suspected cases. Furthermore, countries should also be serious in conducting contact tracing.
“This is the best hope of preventing widespread community transmission,” he said.