Production of COVID-19 Vaccine Starts in Russia, But Half of Country’s Medics Won’t Take It
By Brendan Cole
More than half of medics surveyed in Russia have said they do not trust the COVID-19 vaccine touted by President Vladimir Putin as the country announced it had started its widespread production.
Russia’s health ministry announced on Saturday that the production of the vaccine developed by the Gamaleya Institute outside of Moscow “had begun” with the Tass news agency reporting that 20 countries have asked for the supply of one billion doses.
However it appears that enthusiasm for the vaccine expressed by Putin, who said it had been taken by one of his daughters and offers “sustainable immunity”, is not shared across the Russian medical establishment.
In an online survey of more than 3,000 healthcare professionals via the Doctor’s Handbook app, 52 percent of medics said they would not take the vaccine.
Of those doubters, nearly two-thirds, or 66 percent, said there was not enough data proving that it was effective, and just under a half, or 48 percent, said it had been developed too quickly.
However a fifth of those who would refuse the inoculation, would still recommend the vaccine, named Sputnik V, to others. Fewer than a quarter of the surveyed medics,—or 24.5 percent—said they would get vaccinated with it.
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In this day and age, understanding bacteria and viruses and developing vaccines are national security issues. In my view sizable part of every country’s defense budget should be spent in these pursuits rather than making tanks and other weapons.
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