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11th Nov 2020

Russia claims its ‘Sputnik V’ COVID-19 vaccine is 92% effective

Russia claims its Covid-19 vaccine is 92 percent effective, just days after Pfizer announced a '90% effective' vaccine for use in Europe and America

Alex Roberts

Russia Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccine

That would make it 2% more effective than Pfizer’s

Russia claims its Covid-19 vaccine is 92 percent effective, just days after drug firm Pfizer announced a ‘90% effective’ variation.

Drugmakers in Moscow were put under pressure to keep up with Western scientists in the race for a vaccine.

Now, Russian’s sovereign wealth fund claim preliminary trial results show a 92 percent efficacy rate.

Results in Russia are only the second involving a late-stage human trial. Earlier this week, Pfizer and its partner BioNTech found their vaccine to be more than 90 percent effective.

In a response similar to the way in which Pfizer’s results were handled, Russia say their ‘Sputnik V’ Covid-19 vaccine is encouraging, but is only based on a small number of trial volunteers who had contracted coronavirus.

The sample size (number of people involved in the study) of the Russian study was smaller when compared to Pfizer’s analysis.

Just 20 people were involved in the trial, as opposed to the 94 involved in Pfizer’s study – the results of which were published on Monday.

With the Russian analysis, 20 people developed coronavirus and were then examined according to how many had received the vaccine versus a placebo.

Pfizer said they would try and confirm the accuracy of their vaccine by extending the trial to 164 Covid-19 cases.

Russia said it would continue its analysis for a further six months.

In the UK, health secretary Matt Hancock has told the NHS to prepare itself for a December launch of the Covid-19 vaccine.

Speaking to Sky News yesterday, Hancock said:

“We haven’t seen the full safety data, and obviously that is critical.

“We won’t deploy a vaccine unless we can be confident in its clinical safety, but we also do need to be ready should a vaccine be licensed and get through all those hurdles and be ready to roll it out.”