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Brazil To Start Producing COVID-19 Vaccine In First Half of 2021

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RIO DE JANEIRO, Feb 23  — Brazil will begin to produce a COVID-19 vaccine in the first half of 2021, a state-run biological sciences institution said Monday.

With a technology transfer agreement with British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca, Oswaldo Cruz Foundation based in Rio de Janeiro will be able to start making the vaccine in Brazil in April, Xinhua News Agency quoting Marco Aurelio Krieger, the vice president of production and innovation in health with the foundation, in an interview with the UOL internet portal.

“That has always been our goal. By incorporating production technology to the maximum, we hope to have 100 percent national production in the first half (of this year). We are very content,” Krieger said.

He stressed the importance to Brazil of producing its own COVID-19 vaccine to reduce dependence on other manufacturers amid a high global demand for vaccines.

“If today we wanted to buy more vaccines, we would not be able to … It is time to think about the strategic production of some products, because we have seen global competition throughout the pandemic,” he said.

Brazil is set to receive more than two million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine on Tuesday, according to Krieger.

The AstraZeneca vaccine and the CoronaVac vaccine developed by Chinese pharma company Sinovac are the two vaccines being applied in the country, Xinhua reported.

“I am convinced that in April, May or June, we will be very close to having distributed 100 million doses,” he added.

Source: BERNAMA

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Two Individuals Infected With Nigerian Covid-19 Variant In Malaysia Discovered – MOH

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Recently, the Ministry Of Health Malaysia (MOH) has discovered the first two cases of individuals that got infected with the Nigerian Variant of SARS-CoV-2 or also known as B1.525 in this country. The detected cases are actually from two foreigners who just arrived in Malaysia from Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Both of them were found to be tested Covid-19 positive through the RT PCR Covid-19 swab test.

For a better recognition, The Institute for Medical Research (IMR) then performed a full genome sequencing as it takes into account both of the foreigner’s travel history. The Nigerian COVID-19 variant was first detected in the UK and also Nigeria in the month of December 2020.

MOH also stated that these discovered Nigerian variants can cause an increase in the likelihood as well as a possible decrease in the immune response. Worry not because MOH reassured that IMR and CPRC will continue to monitor the development of the virus mutation and to inform the public from time to time.

Other than that, they also reminded that even though the national immunization program is going smoothly, public health actions are still required as herd immunity has still not been achieved yet.

Sources: Twitter MOH

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UK To Fast-Track Modified Coronavirus Vaccines To Fight New Variants

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LONDON, March 5 – Future vaccines that have been tweaked to deal with new coronavirus variants will be fast-tracked for authorisation, Britain’s medicines and health care regulator announced Thursday, reported Xinhua news agency.

“We have a clear goal that future vaccine modifications that respond to new variants of coronavirus can be made in the shortest possible time without compromising safety, quality or effectiveness,” June Raine, chief executive of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), said in a statement.

According to the new guidance, the three-phase safety trials required for the original coronavirus vaccines won’t be needed but manufacturers must provide robust evidence that the modified vaccine triggers an immune response.

Christian Schneider, chief scientific officer at the MHRA, said: “The public should be confident that no vaccine would be approved unless the expected high standards of safety, quality and effectiveness are met.”

Currently, both the Oxford-AstraZeneca and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines have reportedly shown to be effective against the variant that first emerged in Britain late last year.

However, experts have raised concerns over the efficacy of current vaccines in the variants rst found in South Africa and Brazil, which have both been detected in Britain.

Six cases of P1 variant related to Brazil have been found in Britain, including three in England and three in Scotland.

More than 20.7 million people in Britain have been given the first jab of the coronavirus vaccine, according to the latest official figures.

At present, England is under the third national lockdown since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country. Similar restriction measures are also in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

On Feb 22, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced his long-anticipated “roadmap” exiting the lockdown. Schools in England will reopen from Monday next week as the first part of the four-step plan, which Johnson said was designed to be “cautious but irreversible”.

To bring life back to normal, countries such as Britain, China, Germany, Russia and the United States have been racing against time to roll out coronavirus vaccines.

Source: BERNAMA

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“MySejahtera App Has Been Doing A UI Update…” – Khairy Jamaluddin

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Recently, the MySejahtera App has been doing a UI update for the vaccination of the COVID-19 program. The display for the vaccination is different now to show the simpler flow of the process for everyone that has successfully registered for the vaccine through the MySejahtera App.

According to Khairy Jamaluddin, “This UI update is to push the new display to everyone that has registered”.

For some people, this new display does not show up even though they have registered before. For that problem, Khairy Jamaluddin explained, “Wait for the push. Don’t register again”. But do not be worried if you have to register again because the first registration has been recorded.

He stated in the tweet, “For those that did and see later date of registration, rests assured we have a record of your first try. Appointments are given based on the first time you registered”. The appointment order would not be disturbed as it is given according to the registration done the first time.

Sources: Twitter Khairy Jamaluddin.

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