On December 30, United Kingdom turned out to be the first nation to give its approval to the Oxford University-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. In an official statement, the UK government informed about its acceptance of a recommendation from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) “to sanction Oxford University/AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine for use”. The rollout is likely to start as early as next week. In a statement, AstraZeneca stated that first doses of the vaccine were being released so that vaccinations may start early in the New Year. It further added that under its deal with the UK government to supply up to 100 million doses overall, it aspires to supply millions of doses in the first quarter.
As per AstraZeneca, the authorization endorses two doses injected with an interval of between 4 and 12 weeks. Because of its low cost, availability and ease of use, the vaccine is likely to be trusted on in many countries. As compared to the ultra-cold storage that other vaccines require, it can be kept in refrigerators. Apart from this, the Oxford vaccine has become the second COVID-19 vaccine in use in Britain. The Serum Institute of India (SII) is working on developing the vaccine in India. By the culmination of this month or January, it is also looking for the emergency use authorization of the COVID-19 vaccine ‘Covishield’.
According to CEO of SII, Adar Poonawalla, the emergency is likely to come by December or January in the UK. As per Poonawalla, all the data has been submitted to the UK and Indian authorities.