Chinese COVID-19 vaccine ‘shows no serious side effects’
Volunteers taking part in tests for the potential Chinese coronavirus vaccine in Turkey are being closely monitored at every stage, and the trial results have shown no major side effects, the officials have said.
The phase-3 trials of the Chinese COVID-19 vaccine, which began on Sept. 15, are ongoing in two stages.
The trials are being conducted on high-risk health care workers and medium-risk volunteers.
So far, no significant side effects have been reported. Some of the most common side effects seen included tiredness, headache, muscle pain and fever.
Vaccines are being administered to volunteers at 25 centers across 12 provinces. Some 12,500 samples will be collected from 500-600 people under the trail.
A mid evaluation report is prepared after every 500 volunteers are vaccinated.
During the trial, some of the volunteers were given real vaccines, while others were given a placebo instead.
The volunteers who were given a placebo will be vaccinated later.
The side effects of the vaccine are being recorded on cards daily.
Antibody tests were also done on volunteers to determine if the virus was contracted before the trial began. A PCR test was also done to determine an existing virus.
The second dose of vaccine is given to the volunteers on the 14th day after the first vaccination.
Until the 28th day, the volunteers will be monitored regularly. After this, they will receive a phone call every week for a year to keep a check on their health.
The Chinese vaccine can be administered to people aged between 18 and 59.
Health Minister Fahrettin Koca has earlier announced that Ankara has signed a contract to buy 50 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine from China’s Sinovac Biotech.
At least 10 million doses of the Chinese vaccine will be delivered in December, but the target is to obtain some 20 million doses, and another 20 million doses are scheduled for January 2021, and at least 10 million doses will be delivered in February 2021, according to Koca.
The minister said Turkey has been in talks with other vaccine developers as well, including Russia.
Koca unveiled earlier in November that Turkey was hoping to buy doses of Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine.
“If the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine obtains its license, Turkey may get 1 million doses of the vaccine by the end of the year. We are in talks to gradually go up to 25 million within a year starting from January,” the minister said in his earlier remarks.
Turkey is also conducting studies to develop its vaccine against COVID-19.
Clinical tests of the Turkish injection have already begun and is being tested on volunteers.
“We’ve made good progress on our local vaccine. We plan to bring our vaccine to market by April at the latest,” Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Nov. 25.