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Some people care who made their flu shot or their childhood immunity against a range of deadly diseases. Kovid changed this, turning vaccine makers into household names and calling for choice.
Among the global scale, dosing is now rare Melee Provided by Dispute between EU and British drug manufacturer AstraZeneca plc. More than 90 million people who get a shot consider themselves lucky for any protection against the epidemic. But vaccines are proliferating, of which there are positive test data Johnson and johnson and Novavax Inc. queued its candidates for approval.
Health officials will have to figure out how to allocate all these different vaccines. European Medical Agency The AstraZeneca vaccine was approved on Friday for all adults, but limited test data on its effectiveness in the elderly has led some countries to ban. Germany said it should only be used for people under 65, while Italy cautioned it to operate more than 55 people.
Many people who depend on efficacy rates, dosing programs or side effects want to decide for themselves. If the alternative is a shot from a Western drugmaker vetoed with less transparency from an independent regulator or a Russian or Chinese lab, the desire is even greater.
“We demand the government to provide freedom of choice to the people,” said Gergli Areto, a member of the opposition Democratic Alliance Party in Hungary.
Hungary broke ranks with other EU members to approve Russia’s Sputnik V and a China vaccine Sinopharm Group Ltd. With three shots cleared from Europe’s drug regulator Pfizer Inc. Modern Ink and AstraZeneca. While Prime Minister Viktor Orban is technically offering the choice, his promotion of Chinese and Russian shots is jeopardizing the “willingness to vaccinate” people, Arato said at a press conference this month.
In the US, where so far only two shots are authorized – from Pfizer and Modern – using similar technology and exhibiting nearly identical test results, the choice may be low for now. However, some health officials have begun to address people’s concerns about vaccine differences.
Dubai, Hong Kong
In Dubai, shots developed by people over 60 years old or with pre-existing conditions can access Pfizer Biotech SE, or one from Sinopharm.
In Hong Kong, officials ordered substantial quantities of vaccines from Pfizer-BioNotech, Synovac Biotech Ltd and AstraZeneca – with plans to secure a fourth option – to cover 7.5 million residents.
Pfizer Shot will be available at community immunization centers, with Synovac and Astra options offered in private hospitals and clinics and people will be given the option they want to receive. This is important in Hong Kong, where some people are wary of taking a Chinese-made vaccine.
“If residents don’t want to take a certain vaccine, they can choose to receive shots at another time and at another location,” Chief Executive Carrie Lam said in December.
Supplies are so tight in most parts of the world that elections are impossible. Those getting the shot often do not know who they will receive unless they walk through the doors of a vaccination center or doctor’s office. But this may change if the vaccine from Jammu and Kashmir, Novavax and the like CureVac NV comes on stream in the coming weeks, and pharma giants like Sanofi and NOVARTIS AG Lend their heft to the production effort.
European Union Approval
Even if they do not offer the choice, health officials must decide who gets what. On The Cleveland Clinic is telling Cassandra Calabres patients to take whatever vaccine they are given, even if some are asking her whom she would recommend. “Things may be different because approved,” the email states.
The European Union was criticized for its slow rollout of Pfizer-BioNotech and Modern Vaccines, expanding its offerings by approving the shot of AstraZeneca on Friday. The approval came after days of debate about the efficacy of the shot, in a sign of a rising tide of people willing to choose, the Immunization Commission of Germany recommended against its use in seniors.
In the UK, where infection and malignancy are very high in Hong Kong, health officials are giving priority to rapid vaccination of more and more people. Attempts to inject the second dose of two-shot vaccines into the first arms as possible are delayed. Other countries are also considering similar steps.
“The delivery and availability of very cold freezers is based on logistics,” the Health Department spokesman said by email. Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna shots should be stable for long-term storage, while refrigeration is sufficient for the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Although the UK has set a priority list for those receiving the vaccine – starting with the oldest, most vulnerable people – it does not allocate individual shots based on a person’s profile, the agency said. So an 80-year-old patient may get an AstraZeneca shot while someone else with the same age and health conditions may get a Pfizer.
Some British people are expressing preference on the basis of patriotism rather than what they may have read about different efficacy rates or side effects. Never assume that the American company’s vaccine was 95% effective in large trials, compared with an average of 70% for the shot of AstraZeneca.
“They are saying they want to wait for the British,” Jimmy Whitworth, professor of public health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said in a phone interview. “I think this is purely a nationalist view.”
– with assistance by Veronica Gullias, Zeeshan Hong and Edwith Nair
()Updates with German, Italian guidelines in the third paragraph)