Here’s the news story: Russia Approves Coronavirus Vaccine Before Completing Tests. The vaccine has been approved by the government of Russia before completion of the Phase III trials.
Why did they approve it? Is it so that the general public can be vaccinated immediately? Or does Russia plan to vaccinate its armed forces, its government officials, and its first-responders before the general public?
USA Today: Vladimir Putin says Russia has registered a coronavirus vaccine, and his daughter has been given it —
“Putin added that one of his two adult daughters had “taken part in the experiment” and received two shots of the vaccine.
He said his daughter had a temperature of 100.4 degrees on the day of the first injection, and then it dropped to just over 98.6 degrees the next day. After the second shot she again had a slight increase in temperature, he said.”
The Vaccine is called “Sputnik V”, and is an adenovirus-based vaccine. The New York Times says: “The Russian vaccine uses two strains of adenovirus that typically cause mild colds in humans. They are genetically modified to cause infected cells to make proteins from the spike of the new coronavirus.”
So the modified adenovirus makes spikes like the coronavirus spikes, on the surface of its viral membrane, but the rest of the genetic code from the coronavirus is absent. This prevents a person from contracting Covid-19 from the vaccine. (Other types of vaccine, either live-attenuated or killed types, can potentially infect the persons who are vaccinated.) The use of a whole virus means that the vaccine prompts the immune system to make both antibodies and T-cells that will recognize the Covid-19 virus, if the person becomes infected. So the immunity given by this type of vaccine is stronger than the mRNA vaccine type.
What About Us?
Now here is the question relevant for the rest of the world and for the U.S. — Should other nations approve of vaccines without completion of Phase III trials? Why not? The Phase II trials determine safety and effectiveness. Done and done. Why not vaccinate healthcare providers, such as doctors and nurses, if they are willing, PRIOR to the completion of Phase III? They have the medical knowledge and experience needed to evaluate the risks. Their lives are at stake protecting our lives. I say: GIVE THEM THE CHOICE!!
We could give health care professionals and other first responders (law enforcement, military, fire fighters) the vaccine now. If you are in the military, you might be confined to a ship or to barracks in close quarters, and the virus will spread very rapidly. It is safer for them to have the vaccine now, than to wait and risk infection and death.