Does Russia Already Have a Vaccine?
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday announced that Russia cleared the world’s first COVID-19 vaccine for use and hopes to begin mass inoculation soon. He emphasized that the vaccine cleared all the required checks. Many health experts from around the world raised serious concerns about the speed of Russia's work, suggesting that researchers might be cutting corners. The World Health Organisation (WHO) also urged Russia last week to follow international guidelines for producing a vaccine against COVID-19. The Russian vaccine is not among the WHO's list of vaccines that have reached phase three clinical trials.
Russian officials have also announced that they plan to start mass vaccination in October this year. Vaccinating people before ascertaining its effectiveness and safety is very dangerous. The development of vaccines generally includes testing on thousands of people. However, The Russian vaccine has been tested on less than 100 people. This vaccine seems to be produced in a rush. It is also likely that this is a propaganda coup for the Kremlin amid a global race to develop vaccines against the coronavirus pandemic and accusations that Russian hackers sought to steal international drug research. The Russian government clearing the vaccine before the completion of clinical trials is a violation of international guidelines and is strongly condemnable.