Development of the COVID Vaccine

With COVID-19 cases still rising, people are left to question when an actual vaccine will be released to the public.


Clinical Trials Arena

The process to create a vaccine for COVID-19 is complex.

Adam Khogyani, Columnist

Since COVID, we have been battling the challenges of social distancing, wearing masks, and quarantining. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that they have spent over $30 million for pandemic and vaccine planning. So far, the CDC has been collecting and testing samples for hospital staff, recording more information on contact, and have set up a COVID-19 testing lab. According to Medical News Today, Russia has been working on a cure since September 11th, where they have been testing adenoviruses, which contain a double-stranded DNA strain. They have been working with the antibody for the past month, and it has proved to be effective to several people, although they are still undergoing testing. Japan has also been testing by modifying an existing arthritis drug. Because it boosts immune cells, it could be a very effective drug in terms of COVID. 

As CBS News states, one large pharmaceutical corporation, known as Pfizer, has been working on this vaccine as well, and originally announced a finish date by the end of Oct. 2020. However, on Oct. 16, 2020, CBS News announced that Pfizer may have a change of plans, and the vaccine or drug may not be available until late November. Clinical Trials Arena says that some of the effects to Pfizer’s recent drug have moderate side effects. On Sept. 6, they stopped testing the vaccine due to a severe case in the U.K. Pfizer was then put on hold and had to wait for the approval from authorities to continue conducting their research. The vaccines have been targeted towards people from ages 18 to 85, but have recently moved to those aged 16 and above. 

It is likely that a vaccine could come out by the end of the year; however, it’s COVID-19, and nothing is certain. The vaccines may not be out until 2021, and the risks generated may make them pointless. The side effects to these new drugs may be unsafe, and could even be more damaging than contracting the virus itself. With everything in the air right now, the only thing we can do as citizens is to watch and wait.