WHO Believes Safe COVID-19 Vaccine Won’t Be Available Until Mid-2021

The World Health Organization (WHO) is showing some pessimism about the timeline for a widely available COVID-19 vaccine. According to a new update that was released at a United Nations briefing on Friday, a safe COVID-19 vaccine won’t be available until the middle of next year.

That’s right, we could see the coronavirus pandemic extend until mid-2021.

“We are really not expecting to see widespread vaccination until the middle of next year,” WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris said in Geneva, via the New York Post.

“A lot of people have been vaccinated and what we don’t know is whether the vaccine works … at this stage, we do not have the clear signal of whether or not it has the level of worthwhile efficacy and safety.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had previously said a vaccine could be distributed beginning November 1.

The coronavirus mainly comes from animals and a majority of those who were infected early either worked at or frequently visited the Huanan seafood wholesale market in Wuhan, according to The Guardian. The virus is similar to Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (Mers).

The Wuhan coronavirus is transmitted from person to person through “droplet transmission.” That means an infected person can pass the virus by sneezing or coughing on another person as well as by direct contact.

While a majority of the cases have been detected in the United States and China — with more than 5.72 million confirmed cases and 177,000 deaths in the United States — it has now reached many countries around the world. It has also been confirmed in Italy, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and many other eastern countries.

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