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Scientists sceptical over efficacy of Russia’s ‘Sputnik V’ COVID-19 vaccine

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Scientists sceptical over efficacy of Russia’s ‘Sputnik V’ COVID-19 vaccine

Scientists are skeptical about President Vladimir Putin’s claims on Russia’s potential Covid-19 vaccine, saying the vaccine still needs critical data to determine whether it’s safe or effective.

Daniel Salmon, director of the Institute for Vaccine Safety at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in a statement on Tuesday said that developing, testing and reviewing any potential vaccine is a long, complex and expensive endeavor that typically takes months or even years.

“Phase three trials are critical” for vaccine development,” the director of the Institute for Vaccine Safety at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health told CNBC in an interview.

Medical experts warn that without a large-scale phase three clinical trial, it’s really unknown whether the vaccine even works and what potential side effects it could have on the general public.

“Phase three trials are critical” for drug and vaccine development, said Daniel Salmon, director of the Institute for Vaccine Safety at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. “Would I be confident about the safety and effectiveness without a phase three? Absolutely not.”

READ ALSO: Russia’s covid-19 vaccine undergoes final test phase

Dr. Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, said he worries Russia’s vaccine approval could pressure the U.S. to deploy a vaccine before its ready.

“It could be a major mistake. It could cause a lot of harm,” he told CNBC’s “The Exchange,” adding Russia’s move was a “political stunt.”

Putin in a statement on Tuesday said that one of his daughters has already been inoculated with the vaccine, despite international skepticism.

According to the President of Russia, the cleared vaccine underwent the necessary tests and has proven efficient, offering a lasting immunity against COVID-19.

Speaking at a government meeting, Putin said that the vaccine has undergone proper testing and is safe.

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