The WHO, five of the ten vaccine candidates in the human trial stage are from China alone and the rest are from other countries, including the US and the UK. It usually takes years or a decade or more to develop a safe and effective vaccine. At this time almost all the drug manufacturers involved in the project are trying to reduce it due to the epidemic.
- The increasing strength of vaccine opponents in the world
- The anti-vaccine campaign also caught on with ‘The Great Vaccine Hunt”
- Day-and-night efforts around the world to search for a COVID-19 shot or vaccine
Day-and-night efforts around the world to search for a COVID-19 shot or vaccine (vaccine) are at unprecedented speeds. At the same time, anti-vaccine sentiments are also gaining momentum. The theory behind them is that there is a sense of profitability behind the fast track programs, as well as the health risks and ultimately all this will turn into forced immunization.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr., the nephew of former President John F. Kennedy, is a staunch anti-waxer in America. He is popularly known as RFK Junior. RFK Jr. is also a critical critic of Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates. Let us know that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has announced to give $ 250 million or $ 250 million for the COVID-19 response. But critics like RFK Jr. allege that Microsoft co-founders stand to make a profit from the virus vaccine.
RFK Jr. said in a YouTube broadcast this month, “This (vaccine program) is a huge welfare program just for the pharmaceutical industry and Bill Gates is one of its investors. This vaccine is probably important because no one has Until January; this is the only chance to prepare it. This is a very fast time frame of war level. You cannot do this with a regular vaccine. ”
The anti-vaccine activist has also targeted America’s top disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci. The charges leveled against Bill Gates and Anthony Fauci on behalf of RFK Jr. has been dismissed by the scientific community, the pharmacy industry, and political leadership as a baseless conspiracy theory. However, opposition to COVID vaccine programs is gaining considerable space on social media platforms.
The Strength of Vaccine Opponents is Increasing
According to a study by researchers at George Washington University, groups opposing vaccines are small in size, but their online-communication strategy is worrying and far-reaching. In the study published this month in the journal Nature, researchers have said in their findings that despite having fewer followers on anti-vaccination pages, they are more than those who support vaccination. Also, they are connected to other Facebook pages for discussion. Such as – Parent associations of schools – who do not have any, stand on vaccination.
Facebook pages were used as clusters in the study and over 1,300 of them were searched. These pages are followed by 85 million (8.5 crores) people. Researchers researched these pages to find out attitudes and levels of knowledge. For this, a mix of automated processes and subject-wise analysis was resorted to. In this, the feeds related to the views, public discussion, and posting activity on the pages were surveyed.
According to another survey conducted in April by Assistant Professor of Political Science Matt Motta at Oklahoma State University and doctoral candidate Christine Lunz Trujillo at the University of Minnesota, one in five people in the US was not willing to take COVID shots. 493 American adults were included in this study. They were representing different demographically. They were asked if they would be ready for immunization against COVID-19 once the vaccine was available.
“We found that 1/5 of Americans, and more than half of those who have skeptical views on vaccine safety, may be reluctant to pursue vaccination,” the researchers said.
The researchers continue, “Although most Americans plan vaccination, the rate of non-implementation may be high enough to pose a threat to collective immunity.”
The Great Vaccine Hunt
The people looking for the vaccine are at work. So far, some 124 potential candidates for the vaccine are in various stages of development in different countries. The WHO ranked nearly ten of them at the forefront of the trial. On its part, the WHO has expressed the need to remove the apprehensions being raised about security.
Dr. Maria Van Kerhove, WHO’s technical lead on the coronavirus pandemic, said in this regard “I want to mention that we had a little head-start for some vaccine candidates in the sense that the job of developing these candidates was COVID-19. Had already started before he emerged and he started with SARS and MERS, so some of them are a bit ahead. ”
On May 20, Dr. Kerhov said, “But it is important that as these vaccines are being developed, we make sure that they fit and also meet all the criteria to be safe and effective. Any shortcut to this No, so when we say that growth is accelerating, we mean that there is a real urgent need for a vaccine, so growth is accelerated. But that does not mean that we will give up any step. Should also be allowed to skip any step. This is necessary to ensure a safe and effective vaccine. ”
But policymakers have begun to realize that it is easy to say that a safe vaccine is ready in a short time frame, but difficult to do. For example, HIV was first identified in 1983. But after four decades, the vaccine is still waiting for the infection to stop.
Learning to live with COVID-19
US President Donald Trump, from UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to international health experts, are insisting that humans have to learn to live with coronaviruses. WHO’s emergency director, Dr. Mike Ryan, said in a virtual press conference on May 13, “It is important to say that this virus can become another permanent virus in our communities, and this virus may never go away.” He continued, “HIV has not gone away but we have learned to live with the virus.”
Drugmakers, Partial Data, Market
As the discovery of the COVID vaccine is caught between hope and doubt, any news about it becomes a cause of fluctuations in the global financial markets. Initial data of research conducted by many pharmaceutical companies raised their shares while the rest of the world is in deep recession due to lockdowns.
Wall Street cheered when Dr. Fausi, a White House health adviser, praised the results of the experimental drug Remedisvir for COVID-19 on April 29 as a “clear-cut key”. Shares of Gilead Sciences, the company that manufactured this drug, gained momentum on the same day. However, the results of the drug did not result in PEER-REVIEW.
A week ago, the market and the shares of the same American company came down when WHO briefly published excerpts from another study. It was said that the trials of Remedesvir in China did not work.
The WHO removed that research from its website. Its Peer-reviewed findings were later published in ‘The Lancet’. It was accompanied by a caveat that the trial was incomplete as there were not enough patients. When American biotech company Moderna announced promising results on March 18 from a small trial of its coronavirus vaccine, the company’s stock price jumped by 30%.
David Maris, managing director of Flex Investment Partners, is an analyst covering the pharmaceutical industry for a long time. He says, “These are wild swings based on incomplete information.” The New York Times quoted Maris in an article as saying, “It is a crazy and speculative environment because the epidemic has forced people to believe that a miraculous cure will come out in a miraculous time frame.” This article was named – “How did the upbeat vaccine news cause stocks to rise and become noisy?” The drug manufacturers deny allegations of having any vested interests behind the release of the initial results.
The screw of Anti-Geo-Political Currents
According to the WHO, five of the ten vaccine candidates in the human trial stage are from China alone and the rest are from other countries, including the US and the UK. It usually takes years or a decade or more to develop a safe and effective vaccine. At this time, almost all the drug manufacturers involved in the project are trying to reduce it due to the epidemic.
There are also fears that these programs may get stuck between conflicting streams of geopolitics, trade war and nationalist sentiments.
Earlier this month, Harvard Medical School dean George Q Daly told the New York Times, “Thinking from country to country rather than global terms would be haughty and sad.” He said, “With this kind of approach, the initial doses of the vaccine will have to be dismantled in large numbers at low-risk people. Instead, it should be used on high-risk people globally to prevent the spread of infection. ”