June 21, 2021

The video the world has longed to see… Covid vaccines rolling off the production line

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FROM MAIL ON SUNDAY

  1. Pfizer is rattling off thousands of doses of its Covid-19 vaccine in Belgium
  2. The drug is being stockpiled if the contents prove safe and are effective 
  3. The US-based company can make 100 million doses available if allowe

The US giant hopes to make 100 million doses available this year, of which 40 million are destined for the UK – a figure that will be dwarfed by the 1.3 billion jabs the company aims to manufacture in 2021. 

Every patient who receives the vaccine will need two doses.

In an interview with The Mail on Sunday today, Pfizer UK boss Ben Osborn says: ‘It was great to see the first vial coming off the manufacturing line. 

‘It just brought a tremendous smile to my face to see all of this work actually result in a product.’ 

The news of progress on the Covid-19 vaccine came as: 

  • It was revealed MPs DID flout 10pm bar curfew but Matt Hancock refused 30 TIMES to say if he was among them as House of Commons bosses are accused of a cover-up;
  • Mayor Andy Burnham blamed Chancellor Rishi Sunak for being ‘the problem’ in row over financial support for Manchester Tier 3 lockdown and accuses him of making ‘wrong judgements’ throughout pandemic;
  • Tory MPs demanded Boris Johnson set a ‘clear end date’ for local lockdowns and set out a strategy to get life back to normal amid fears ministers could this week agree new ‘super’ Tier Three rules;
  • Former Prime Minister Tony Blair is accused of breaking two-week quarantine rules after being photographed at a London club 10 days after returning from a White House event in the US
  • Former Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt was accused of cynically positioning himself against PM as he calls for half-term lockdown.
Hundreds of thousands of doses of a possible Covid-19 vaccine have been prepared by a plant in Belgium 
Pfizer’s UK boss Ben Osborn said: It was great to see the first vial coming off the manufacturing line. It just brought a tremendous smile to my face to see all of this work actually result in a product’

Pfizer manufacture thousands of doses of Covid-19 vaccineLoaded: 0%Progress: 0%0:00PreviousPlaySkipMuteCurrent Time0:00/Duration Time2:27FullscreenNeed Text

Whizzing off the production line in thousands of tiny bottles – new footage shows the vaccine that could end the Covid misery engulfing the planet.

Drug giant Pfizer has already manufactured ‘several hundred thousand doses’ of the jab at its plant in Puurs, Belgium, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

They are being stockpiled ready to be rolled out worldwide if clinical trials are a success, and regulators deem it safe and effective.

Pfizer, which is working with Germany’s BioNTech, is currently running a trial on 44,000 people, and last week said it plans to apply for emergency US approval of its vaccine in November. 

That puts Pfizer in pole position in the race to launch a Covid vaccine.

Separately, Osborn said Pfizer’s laboratory in Sandwich, Kent, has unearthed drugs that could provide a potential cure for Covid-19. 

The UK's deputy chief medical officer, Jonathan Van-Tam, reportedly told MPs last week that stage three trials of the vaccine created at Oxford University could be rolled-out in December, reports the Sunday Times

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The UK’s deputy chief medical officer, Jonathan Van-Tam, reportedly told MPs last week that stage three trials of the vaccine created at Oxford University could be rolled-out in December, reports the Sunday Times

It comes as it was today reported that the NHS is preparing to introduce a coronavirus vaccine soon after Christmas.

The UK’s deputy chief medical officer, Jonathan Van-Tam, reportedly told MPs last week that stage three trials of the vaccine created at Oxford University, which is being produced by Astra Zeneca, could be rolled-out in December, reports the Sunday Times.  

According to the paper, he said: ‘We aren’t light years away from it. It isn’t a totally unrealistic suggestion that we could deploy a vaccine soon after Christmas. 

‘That would have a significant impact on hospital admissions and deaths.’ 

Thousands of NHS staff are to undergo training to administer a vaccine before the end of the year, the paper adds.

Meanwhile, Boris Johnson is under growing pressure from furious Tory grandees to set out a ‘clear end date’ for local lockdowns.

Senior Conservative Party figures have warned the Prime Minister he must announce a ‘strategy for returning life to normal’ as they said an indefinite cycle of localised shutdowns is not acceptable and would wreck the economy. 

The row over local lockdowns came as the Mayor of Greater Manchester (pictured: People enjoy a night out in Manchester), Andy Burnham, blamed Chancellor Rishi Sunak for being 'the problem' in the standoff over moving the region into Tier Three

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The row over local lockdowns came as the Mayor of Greater Manchester (pictured: People enjoy a night out in Manchester), Andy Burnham, blamed Chancellor Rishi Sunak for being ‘the problem’ in the standoff over moving the region into Tier Three

Meanwhile, in Leeds, people were also out on the town last night despite the area being on the brink of a Tier Three lockdown

Meanwhile, in Leeds, people were also out on the town last night despite the area being on the brink of a Tier Three lockdown

Bars and pubs were also busy in London, which has recently been moved into Tier 2 of the new alert system

Bars and pubs were also busy in London, which has recently been moved into Tier 2 of the new alert systemPM ‘will intervene’ if agreement not made with Manchester leadersLoaded: 0%Progress: 0%0:00PreviousPlaySkipMuteCurrent Time0:00/Duration Time4:43FullscreenNeed Text

The intervention came amid growing speculation that ministers could this week agree to new ‘super’ Tier Three restrictions which would be imposed on the parts of the country with the highest coronavirus infection rates.

Lockdown critics are on red alert after Sir Patrick Vallance, the Chief Scientific Adviser, said last week that the draconian Tier Three measures will not be enough to get the R rate below the key number of 1.

He said on Friday the ‘baseline’ measures set out in the top tier of restrictions, which include shutting pubs and banning household mixing indoors, ‘almost certainly aren’t enough’ to get the virus back under control. 

But the prospect of even stricter rules being rolled out by the Government is likely to spark an angry Tory backlash. 

Many Tory MPs and peers believe the current blueprint of local lockdowns is not sustainable in the longer term. 

Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the 1922 Committee of Tory backbenchers, said it was ‘pointless’ to rely on lockdowns to suppress on the virus. 

He told the Sunday Telegraph: ‘If further restrictions on people’s lives are proposed, the Government has to set a clear end date and a strategy for returning life to normal.’ 

Lord Lamont of Lerwick, the former chancellor, said repeatedly imposing lockdowns and then lifting them was ‘deeply damaging to business and is not really a strategy’.  

Sir Bernard Jenkin, a Conservative backbencher, has urged the Government to set out a ‘living with coronavirus’ policy. 

He and five other Essex MPs have also called for more financial support for businesses in Tier Two areas. 

Coronavirus positive tests in London have increased dramatically since the beginning of September but changes in recent weeks suggest the rate of rise is slowing down, with a 37 per cent increase in the seven days to October 7, compared to the almost double 84 per cent in the third week of September

Coronavirus positive tests in London have increased dramatically since the beginning of September but changes in recent weeks suggest the rate of rise is slowing down, with a 37 per cent increase in the seven days to October 7, compared to the almost double 84 per cent in the third week of September

Some 136 deaths were recorded yesterday, but scientists have warned this could rise to 690 by the end of the monthAndy Burnham rejects Tier 3 Covid rules without economic supportLoaded: 0%Progress: 0%0:00PreviousPlaySkipMuteCurrent Time0:00/Duration Time3:46FullscreenNeed Text

A Government spokesman said: ‘We keep all measures under review and we don’t want restrictions to be in place any longer than is necessary, but where the virus is spreading we must take targeted action in order to save lives, protect the NHS, keep children at school and shelter the economy.’   

Mayor Andy Burnham blames Chancellor Rishi Sunak for being ‘the problem’ in row over financial support for Manchester Tier 3 lockdow 

A growing feud between Andy Burnham and top ministers is set to intensify after the Labour mayor labelled Rishi Sunak ‘the problem’ in a row over tighter coronavirus restrictions in Greater Manchester.

The mayor of Greater Manchester, who has called for more financial support for the area ahead of plans to plunge it into a Tier 3 lockdown, has hit out at the Chancellor, who he says has made ‘wrong judgements throughout this’.

He also attacked Mr Sunak’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme as ‘poor judgement’, in an interview with New Statesman magazine.

It comes after allies close to Chancellor yesterday accused Mr Burnham of using the virus as his ‘soapbox moment’.

Mr Burnham and Conservative politicians in Greater Manchester are opposing the government’s Tier 3 measures, which will see pubs and bars closed in the area.

The two sides are currently locked in a stalemate over the proposals.

Mr Burnham has called for a return to the generosity of the original furlough scheme that saw the Treasury pay 80 per cent of workers wages.

But Mr Sunak has only offered a 66 per cent subsidy for those whose firms forced to shut by Tier 3 measures.

Ahead of supposed talks set up for the weekend, which Mr Burnham’s office deny, the Greater Manchester mayor hit out at Mr Sunak in an interview with the New Statesman magazine: ‘I think the problem now is, to a large degree, the Chancellor. I think he’s made wrong judgements throughout this.’

He criticised the Eat Out to Help Out meal subsidy scheme as a ‘poor judgment’, and added: ‘The cost of that should have been paying for the furlough now.’

But he insisted, during the interview, conducted on Friday, that the failure ultimately lies with Boris Johnson as Prime Minister.

He added: ‘He shouldn’t be allowing the Treasury to run the policy’.

Mr Burnham and council leaders have insisted they ‘are ready to meet at any time’ in order to broker an agreement with No 10 but there was a failure in communication on Saturday.

Downing Street indicated a call had been scheduled for Sunday morning after a message was left with Mr Burnham.

But a spokesman for the mayor said: ‘Nothing has yet been arranged.’

A Downing Street source responded: ‘No 10 reached out this morning to try and arrange a meeting with the Mayor of Manchester.

‘We will continue to try and reach an agreement on these difficult, yet necessary, measures to protect the NHS and the people of Manchester.’

Mr Johnson on Friday threatened to impose measures without local support as he warned that ‘time is of the essence’ and that ‘tragically more people will die’ with each day of delay. 

The row over local lockdowns came as the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, blamed Chancellor Rishi Sunak for being ‘the problem’ in the standoff over moving the region into Tier Three.  

The feud between Number 10 and the Labour mayor continued yesterday after Downing Street said fresh talks had been set up for the weekend, only for Mr Burnham’s office to deny that was the case.

Mr Burnham and Conservative politicians in Greater Manchester oppose Tier Three measures being imposed, with the mayor calling for greater financial support for workers and businesses.

He has called for a return to the generosity of the original furlough scheme that saw the Treasury pay 80 per cent of workers wages, but Mr Sunak has only offered a 66 per cent subsidy for those whose firms forced to shut by Tier Three measures.

The Greater Manchester mayor told the New Statesman magazine: ‘I think the problem now is, to a large degree, the Chancellor. I think he’s made wrong judgements throughout this.’ 

Downing Street indicated a call had been scheduled for Sunday morning after a message was left with Mr Burnham.

But a spokesman for the mayor said: ‘Nothing has yet been arranged.’

A Downing Street source responded: ‘No 10 reached out this morning to try and arrange a meeting with the Mayor of Manchester.

‘We will continue to try and reach an agreement on these difficult, yet necessary, measures to protect the NHS and the people of Manchester.’

Mr Johnson on Friday threatened to impose measures on Greater Manchester without local support as he warned that ‘time is of the essence’ and that ‘tragically more people will die’ with each day of delay. 

Meanwhile, today, Mr Burnham accused Mr Johnson of ‘exaggerating’ the severity of the coronavirus outbreak in Greater Manchester as Michael Gove said the mayor was ‘posturing’ and must accept the region moving into Tier Three restrictions. 

Mr Burnham, who is refusing to accept new rules unless ministers bring forward a more generous package of financial support, said this morning that ‘figures have been falling in Manchester itself in the last few days’.

Expert analysis published by the Sunday Telegraph suggested cases in Manchester have now decreased for nine days in a row.

Meanwhile, statistics published by Manchester City Council for the period between October 4-10 showed there were 2,484 people with a newly confirmed diagnosis of Covid-19, giving an infection rate of 449.3 per 100,000 people.

However, in the previous seven day period there were 3,224 people with a newly confirmed diagnosis, giving an infection rate of 583.2 per 100,000.

The numbers suggest that cases have also been falling in the wider Greater Manchester region and not just in the city itself.

On October 12 there were an average of 1,563 new cases confirmed per day over the preceding seven days in the region.

But by Thursday October 15 the average had dropped to 1,076 new cases confirmed per day.

Mr Burnham remains in a tense stand off with the Government and Mr Gove claimed this morning that the mayor was guilty of ‘indulging’ in ‘political positioning’ as he urged the Labour chief to back down. 

But Mr Burnham dismissed accusations of ‘playing politics’ as he called for an end to the ‘war of words’ but also left the door open to a legal challenge if ministers decide to impose the measures without his agreement. 

Artist Peter Barber works on a mural in Manchester city centre yesterday, depicting nurse Melanie Senior after The National Portrait Gallery commissioned the mural based on a photograph by Johannah Churchill

Artist Peter Barber works on a mural in Manchester city centre yesterday, depicting nurse Melanie Senior after The National Portrait Gallery commissioned the mural based on a photograph by Johannah Churchill

Official data shows the rolling seven day average of coronavirus cases in Greater Manchester has been falling in recent days

Official data shows the rolling seven day average of coronavirus cases in Greater Manchester has been falling in recent days

The threat came as a top expert and SAGE committee member today warned  Christmas will be ‘tough’ this year and is unlikely to be a traditional family celebration if coronavirus infections continue to increase.

Professor Jeremy Farrar, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said the UK faces a ‘very, very difficult’ period over the next three to six months.

But Professor Farrar, who is the director of the Wellcome Trust, research-charity based in London, said there is ‘light at the end of the tunnel’.

For more on this story and video go to: DAILY MAIL

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Comments

  1. Daniel Ryans says

    It is true that COVID 19 vaccine is on the way. But it should be check properly. Because, in the Russian vaccine, there are few side effects are found in several people. Also, recent news is that a trial of the Oxford University vaccine caused a death in Brazil. So people should still maintain the precautions and wear washable isolation gowns Canada for the safety.

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