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China expects vaccine to be ready by November

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Wu Guizhen, head of biosafety at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said she expected Chinese vaccines for Covid-19 would soon be available to the public as soon as November or December.

Speaking to state broadcaster CCTV, Wu said: “It will be very soon. The progress is currently very smooth.”

China, the world’s largest producer of vaccines, is currently handing some nine of the 30 vaccines which have reached human testing stage. Last week, the University of Hong Kong, working with a team of researchers from the mainland announced that a nasal spray vaccine was entering clinical trials.

Thousands of Chinese residents have already received experimental vaccines made by Chinese companies, including China National Biotec Group, a subsidiary of the state-owned Sinopharm, and Sinovac Biotech. In June, authorities green-lighted experimental vaccine on those in the military and in July, medical workers and others in “high risk jobs” have been given vaccines.

Chinese health experts have said that not everyone will need to be vaccinated. Gao Fu, director of China’s CDC said medical workers, Chinese nationals in overseas virus hotspots, and others would be prioritised.

A unit of state pharmaceutical giant China National Pharmaceutical Group (Sinopharm) and U.S.-listed Sinovac Biotech are developing the three vaccines under the state’s emergency use programme. A fourth COVID-19 vaccine being developed by CanSino Biologics was approved for use by the Chinese military in June.

Read more via The Guardian

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