Coronavirus: Pakistanis flock to hospitals for registration of China-made vaccine

In this photo taken on 25 November 2020, volunteers are awaiting the introduction of new Chinese-made vaccines for Kovid-19 coronaviruses, a first phase 3 clinical trial for any vaccine in Pakistan, at a hospital in Islamabad. Thousands of volunteers are arriving at research hospitals across Pakistan to be involved in the final phase clinical trials of the Chinese-made vaccine for coronovirus. This is the first time Pakistan has participated in such a trial, which comes after the announcement of positive vaccines by Western pharmaceutical companies this month. – AFP

ISLAMABAD: Thousands of volunteers from Pakistan are roaming in research hospitals to register themselves for the final phase of clinical trials of a Chinese developed vaccine for coronovirus.

This is the first time Pakistan has participated in such a trial, which comes after the announcement of positive vaccines by Western pharmaceutical companies this month.

The vaccine is being developed by CanSinoBio and Beijing Institute of Biotechnology China.

A volunteer from Shifa Hospital in Islamabad said, “I have pushed myself for a noble cause, which will help humanity.”

He said, “Others should go ahead and take part in this noble cause, which can save people’s lives.”

Over the years, China has focused its attention on development projects, construction of roads, power plants and a strategic port in Pakistan.

Despite Pakistan’s checked history with vaccination campaigns, Beijing has now tapped one of its closest allies to participate in vaccine trials.

In this photo taken on November 25, 2020, Dr. Ejaz Ahmad Khan, chief investigator for the Chinese-made vaccine trial for Kovid-19 coronovirus, the first phase 3 clinical trial for any vaccine in Pakistan, one with AFP A hospital in Islamabad speaks during the interview. Thousands of volunteers are arriving at research hospitals across Pakistan to be involved in the final phase clinical trials of the Chinese-made vaccine for coronovirus. This is the first time Pakistan has participated in such a trial, which comes after the announcement of positive vaccines by Western pharmaceutical companies this month. – AFP

“We hope to make some conclusions about the accuracy and efficacy of the vaccine in two to three months,” said Ejaz Ahmed Khan, the lead researcher who oversees the trial in Pakistan. AFP.

Officials said that Pakistan has already deactivated 7,000 out of 10,000 participants.

The trial comes with intensive care wards around the country, one with capacity as the other, a deadly wave of coronovirus spreads and officials struggle to combat public apathy to the epidemic.

More than 382,000 cases, including more than 7,800 deaths, have been confirmed in the country since the virus arrived in late February.

Less than a year later, coronoviruses have claimed that 1.4 million lives have begun to spread worldwide, with many promising COVID-19 vaccines on the verge of release.

In this photo taken on 25 November 2020, volunteers are awaiting the introduction of new Chinese-made vaccines for Kovid-19 coronaviruses, a first phase 3 clinical trial for any vaccine in Pakistan, at a hospital in Islamabad. Thousands of volunteers are arriving at research hospitals across Pakistan to be involved in the final phase clinical trials of the Chinese-made vaccine for coronovirus. This is the first time Pakistan has participated in such a trial, which comes after the announcement of positive vaccines by Western pharmaceutical companies this month. – AFP

Four different drug manufacturers have recently announced that their vaccines are effective for most people.

Due to doubts over vaccines, Pakistan is one of two countries where polio continues to spread, leading to fears that a new campaign to vaccinate populations against coronoviruses will fail.

The Chinese vaccine is also undergoing phase 3 trials – or large-scale testing on humans – in several other countries, including China, Russia, Chile, Argentina and Saudi Arabia.

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