Third Dutch-supported vaccine shows promising results: up to 90% effective
A vaccine against Covid-19 developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University proved to be about 70 percent effective on average, the British pharmaceutical said on Monday. Two dosing regimens were tested, with one showing 90 percent effectiveness, and the other 62 percent.
The 90 percent effective dosage regimen involves trial participants first getting a half dose of the vaccine, followed by a full dose at least one month later. In the 62 percent effective regimen, participants received two full doses, at least a month apart. AstraZeneca reported no hospitalizations or severe Covid-19 cases among participants receiving the vaccine.
"This vaccine's efficacy and safety confirm that it will be highly effective against Covid-19 and will have an immediate impact on this public health emergency," AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot said. "Furthermore, the vaccine's simple supply chain and our no-profit pledge and commitment to broad, equitable and timely access means it will be affordable and globally available, supplying hundreds of millions of doses on approval."
AstraZeneca was the first pharmaceutical country with which the Netherlands, along with France, Germany and Italy, signed a deal to buy Covid-19 vaccines. That deal was later expanded to the entire EU. It is also one of three vaccines the Dutch government is relying on to inoculate the Dutch population in the first quarter of next year.
The AstraZeneca vaccine is the third Covid-19 vaccine the Netherlands has a stake in to show promising results, after Pfizer and Moderna reported 90 percent effectiveness or higher last week. Pfizer was criticized, however, for refusing to give up the patent rights to its vaccine in order to speed up mass production. Moderna said it would give up its patent rights for the duration of the pandemic, at least.