COVID 19 VACCINES
COVID-19 is a disease caused by a new coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2. People with COVID-19 report a variety of symptoms including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Anyone can get COVID-19. However, people 60 years of age and older who have medical conditions such as heart disease, pneumonia or diabetes are at greater risk of serious illness with COVID-19. If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and want to get tested, the CDC recommends that you call your healthcare provider first. You can visit your local health department or local website to check the latest location details on the test. If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and choose not to be tested, it is important to stay home and away from others.
What we need right now is a vaccine, to defeat this life taking pandemic. Vaccines save millions of lives each year. Vaccines work by training and preparing the body’s natural defenses — the immune system – to recognize and fight off the germs and germs that are being targeted. When the body is exposed to these germs later, the body is ready to kill them and prevent further illness.
As of December 21, the FDA has granted us an emergency use permit (EUA) for two COVID-19 vaccines. As more vaccine manufacturers submit their applications for emergency use to the FDA, more vaccines should be available monitoring after approval. While the measures are still being developed or disseminated, none of them are overlooked. In December 2020, the FDA approved emergency use (EUA) for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and the modern COVID-19 vaccine. Both Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines require 2 doses to work effectively. Vaccine doses of Pfizer COVID-19 should be given 21 days apart. Moderna COVID-19 vaccine doses should be given within 28 days separately. There are many types of COVID-19 vaccines in the formulation that are not approved by the FDA. Pfizer and Moderna vaccine are messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines.
The ACT Accelerator is a ground breaking land-based partnership to accelerate the development, production, and equal access to COVID-19 testing, treatment, and vaccines. COVAX is jointly funded by Gavi , the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and WHO. Its aim is to accelerate the development and development of the COVID-19 vaccine, and to ensure the fair and equitable access to all countries in the world.
The safety and efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine has been tested by manufacturers in three phases of clinical trials.
- PHASE 1A: Initial doses of vaccines should go to health care workers (HCPs), including non-medical staff, AND people living and working in long-term care facilities (LTCFs).
- PHASE 1B: The following doses of COVID vaccine should be given to people 75 years of age and older AND to “key” key employees.
- PHASE 1C: With the availability of COVID vaccines (possibly by 2021), the ACIP / CDC recommends moving to Phase 1C, which will include people aged 65 -74; people between the ages of 16-64 with high risk / health conditions; and “other” key employees.
As more COVID-19 drugs become available throughout the year 2021, vaccination recommendations will increase and include more people.
A series of independent performance reviews and safety evidence are required, including a review of regulatory approval and approval in the country where the vaccine is made, before the WHO looks at the vaccine product for compliance. Part of this process involves the Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety. In addition to the data review for regulatory purposes, the evidence should be reviewed for the purpose of policy recommendations on how the policies should be applied. WHO-based external panel of experts, called the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE), analyzes results from clinical trials, as well as disease evidence, age groups affected, risk factors for disease, and other information. The panel then recommends how to use and how to vaccinate vaccines. Vaccines must be produced in large quantities, which is a great challenge and unprecedented – all the while continuing to produce all the other important life-saving vaccines that are already being used. As a last resort, all approved vaccines will need to be distributed through a complex flow process, with complex stock control and temperature control. WHO is working with partners around the world to accelerate every step of the process, while ensuring the highest standards of safety.
Now the question comes, will Covid 19 Vaccines provide long term protection? Well the answer is : It is very early to know whether the COVID-19 drugs will provide long-term protection. Further research is needed to answer this question. However, it is encouraging that the available data suggest that the majority of people recovering from COVID-19 develop immune responses that provide at least some protection from recovery – although we are still learning how effective this protection is, and how long it lasts.
We shall now take a look on the types of Covid 19 vaccines being developed.
- Vaccines that are ineffective or weak, using a type of virus that is either inactive or weak and therefore do not cause infections, but still form an immune response.
- Protein-based drugs, using harmless protein fragments or protein shells mimic the COVID-19 virus to safely produce an immune response.
- Antiretroviral drugs (ARVs), which use a gene that is genetically engineered not to cause disease, but to produce coronavirus proteins to safely produce an immune response.
- RNA and DNA molecules, a cutting process that uses RNA or genetic DNA to make the protein itself that stimulates the body’s response.
The ACT-Accelerator vaccine, developed by CEPI, GAVI and WHO, accelerates the demand for effective vaccines in all countries. At the same time, it supports the building of production capacity, and supply chain, ahead of time so that 2 billion volumes can be properly distributed by the end of 2021. The effect of the COVID-19 vaccine on this pandemic will depend on a number of factors. This includes things like the effectiveness of vaccines; how quickly they are approved, made and delivered; and how many people are vaccinated. Many scientists expect that, like other vaccines, the COVID-19 vaccine will not be 100% effective. WHO is working to help ensure that any approved vaccines are as effective as possible, and therefore have a significant impact on the pandemic.