A Vaccine Expert Says 2022 Will Be A Year Full Of COVID Vaccination

A Vaccine Expert Says 2022 Will Be A Year Full Of COVID Vaccination

According to a prominent researcher, if 2021 were the year of vaccine research, 2022 would be the year of vaccines and booster doses.


A Vaccine Expert Says 2022 Will Be A Year Full Of COVID Vaccination

According to a prominent researcher, if 2021 were the year of vaccine research, 2022 would be the year of vaccines and booster doses.

2022 will be the year of vaccination — either primary for people who haven’t been vaccinated, or booster vaccinations for those of us who have," said Jerome Kim, director-general of the International Vaccine Institute, a non-profit organisation dedicated to vaccine research in poorer countries.

Hopefully, it will also be the year when anti-Covid drugs make a comeback, making treatments more effective, Kim said on Monday’s “Street Signs Asia" segment of CNBC.

In late December, the United States Food and Drug Administration approved two antiviral medications for emergency use to treat Covid-19, a significant step forward in the fight against the coronavirus, which has killed more than 5.4 million people globally since it emerged in late 2019.

Paxlovid, a brand name for Pfizer’s Covid oral therapy tablet, was the first oral antiviral drug approved for emergency use in the United States. Another was Merck’s antiviral tablet, molnupiravir, which was licenced for individuals with mild to moderate Covid who were at risk of developing severe illness.

As 2021 came to a conclusion, the more transmissible omicron variant appeared, and cases have risen dramatically in recent weeks around the globe.

Source - The Guardian

The caseload in the United States reached a record high last week. As of Tuesday, the daily number of new cases nationwide was at a record high of more than 265,000, according to statistics provided by Johns Hopkins University. It beat the previous peak of over 252,000 average daily cases established on Jan. 11 of last year.

South Korea said Friday that it would expand restrictions after increasing dangerous Covid infections.

Vaccination For Those In Need

In 2022, Kim said that the primary focus would be on providing vaccinations to those in need, particularly those in poorer countries with restricted access.

A really critical point to make — omicron is not the omega, and we are going to see additional mutants and variants of concern, and hopefully we become more equitable in the use of vaccines,” he said.

Increasingly, supply [of vaccines] will not be the issue. The issue will be: Who can get that vaccine into the arms of people who need the vaccination. That’s going to be the key for 2022, it’s getting people vaccinated,” Kim said, adding there’s a “significant number of people” in low-income countries who have not received a single vaccine dose. 

According to Our World in Data, around 58.3 percent of the world’s population has received at least one dose of a Covid vaccination, while just 8.5 percent of individuals in low-income countries have received at least one dose.

Addressing The ‘Diagnostics Gap’

Kim also emphasised a so-called “diagnostics gap" in the Covid-19 diagnosis stage.

That implies that in lower-income countries, they don’t do as many tests, and they definitely don’t do as many sequences,” he said. Such genomic sequencing efforts of coronavirus case samples help track new variants.

He added that countries need to get “much better at addressing” such a divide.

It’s the sequencing of variants from all over the world that allow scientists to know if a new worrisome variant is emerging,” Kim said. “Getting on top of it as quickly as possible is key if we want to open up, because we know that air travel does fairly efficiently spread the coronavirus.”

Source – CNBC

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