Reports that clinical trials of a vaccine for COVID-19 have shown it can prevent 90% of people from getting the virus have been welcomed by the Chief Minister, Howard Quayle MHK.
The Chief Minister said:
'The news is hugely encouraging. The Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine has been tested on more than 40,000 people in six countries, with no safety concerns raised. There is still a way to go in the approval process, but today represents a significant milestone along the road to developing a safe and effective vaccine.
'Although a vaccine is still some way off, planning is also underway in the Isle of Man to ensure that we can deliver a mass vaccination programme – effectively and efficiently – when the time comes. We will continue to work closely with the UK NHS in the coming weeks and months.
'This development offers a glimmer of hope for 2021, and is a tribute to the incredible work underway by so many scientists. Despite this promising sign, we cannot allow complacency to creep in. We cannot let down our guard and so we must continue to adhere to the basics, if we are to keep our community safe: being aware of the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 so we know when to dial 111 to request advice or a test; practicing good hand and respiratory hygiene; self-isolating for 14 days when instructed to do so. These basic measures will continue to play a vital role in the fight against the virus for some time to come.'