The head of the company that helped created Pfizer’s effective coronavirus said life could be “normal” within a year if enough people are vaccinated.
Professor Ugur Sahin, the chief executive of German company BioNTech, told the BBC that high vaccine update may mean “we could have a normal winter next year.”
He said the number of vaccines under development means he is “confident” that hurdles to effective distribution will be overcome.
Pfizer said last week that its vaccine is 90% effective in preventing the virus. Moderna said Monday that its vaccine is 94.5% effective.
Both still need to be approved before mass use, but are promising evidence that a vaccine is close.
Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Video: How viruses like the coronavirus mutate
A scientist behind Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine said that life could be back to normal within a year if enough people take the shot, or others like it.
Professor Ugur Sahin, the chief executive of German company BioNTech, which created the vaccine with Pfizer, told the BBC’s “The Andrew Marr Show” on Sunday that high uptake would mean a return to normality.
If there is a “high vaccination rate before autumn/winter next year,” he said, then “we could have a normal winter next year.”
You can watch Sahin speak here:
He said that in order for this to work, authorities around the world will need to successful distribute it. He said he was “confident that this will happen because there are a number of vaccine companies helping us to increase the supply.”
Pfizer announced last week that it found its vaccine to be 90% effective in preventing COVID-19.
And US biotech company Moderna said on Monday that its vaccine is 94.5% effective in preventing the virus. Both vaccines still need to be approved by regulators.
Other companies are due to release their results soon.
But Sahin warned the BBC that it will take a while for the vaccine to make a difference.
“This winter will be hard. We will not have big impact on infection numbers with our vaccine in this winter. If everything continues to go well, we will start to deliver the vaccine end of this year, beginning of next year.
Pfizer says that it expects to deliver around 50 million doses around the world this year, and up to 1.3 billion by the end of 2021.
Each person needs two doses, which means 300 million doses would be enough for 150 million people. Patients also have to wait three weeks between the two shots.
Sahin’s comments come after Dr. Anthony Fauci, the US’s top infectious disease expert, said on Sunday that the US could return to “relative normal” in “the second and third quarter” of 2021 if the majority of Americans receive a vaccine.
Read the original article on Business Insider