Russia starts mass vaccinations with Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine

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Source: U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Russia has begun its COVID-19 vaccination program on Saturday, marking the country’s first mass immunization effort against the dreaded disease.

Moscow has started distributing the Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine, with the city’s task force saying the shot would first be made available to medical frontline health workers, teachers, and social workers who are among those high risk from the virus.

Vaccine developers have claimed that Sputnik V is 95 percent effective and does not cause any major side effects. The vaccine, however, is still undergoing mass testing. Scientists have earlier raised issues about the speed at which Russia has worked.

Russia has developed two COVID-19 vaccines

The country has developed two coronavirus vaccines. Sputnik V is heavily supported by the Russian Direct Investment Fund while another vaccine has been developed by Siberia’s Vector Institute.

Thousands of people in the county have started registering to get vaccine shots over the weekend.

Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said the list would grow as vaccine production ramps up in the country.

Sputnik V is administered in two injections

Residents who received injections in the last 30 days or those who experienced respiratory issues within the last two weeks are not included in the first list, as will those with chronic illnesses and pregnant women.

Every person will get two injections, the second 21 days after the first.

In March, Moscow has shut down all public places including public parks and cafes.

Police personnel have been patrolling the streets searching for residents violating quarantine protocols.

Russia has recorded 28,782 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, its highest daily tally, pushing the country’s total to 2,431,731.

Meanwhile, concerns have mounted after drug dealers on the darknet are reportedly taking advantage of the news that the United Kingdom approved the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.

The Pfizer–BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is poised to be rolled out in the U.K. next week, wherein medical workers and senior citizens in care homes set to become the first recipients.

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