More Covid vaccines are expected to be available to the public, after the UK approved the Moderna coronavirus vaccine for mass distribution. But which of the three Covid vaccines is the very best… and does it even matter?
Prime Minister Boris Johnson claimed it was “excellent news” that the UK approved a third Covid vaccine for public use.
US firm Moderna’s vaccine has been likened to the Pfizer/AstraZeneca jab, which was the first to be approved in the UK.
The Covid vaccine is the very best way to avoid becoming infected with the deadly virus.
After a surge in Covid cases throughout the country, the arrival of the vaccines have come at the right time.
The arrival of the Modern vaccine has been welcomed by Deputy Chief Medical Officer for England, Jonathan Van-Tam.
He urged the public to follow the lockdown restriction rules, as combined with the new vaccines, it increases the chances of normality sooner rather than later.
“The highly effective Moderna vaccine is another impressive success for science and is another testament to the hard work of researchers and selfless clinical trial volunteers,” he said.
“This vaccine will save lives once doses become available, but it is crucial we all continue to follow the rules to protect each other until enough people have been protected.”
Which is the best Covid vaccine?
All three of the UK-approved Covid vaccines are different, and they each have different rates of effectiveness.
The Pfizer vaccine offers 95 percent protection against the coronavirus, after having both of the required doses.
Moderna’s jab is similar, with an efficacy of 94.5 percent; although trials are still ongoing, and that number may change.
The Oxford trial could be up to 90 percent effective after having both doses.
Patients being given the Pfizer vaccine should receive their second dose between three and 12 weeks after their first dose.
For the Oxford vaccine, the second dose should be received between four and 12 weeks after the first.
The Moderna vaccine requires around 28 days between doses, but that may be extended to allow as many as possible to receive their first dose.
One of the biggest differences between the three vaccines, however, is how they need to be stored.
The Pfizer jab brings a number of challenges for its storage and distribution, as they need to be kept at around -70 degrees Celsius.
The manufacturer has created its own dry ice packaging to keep the vaccines cool, but it means they can only be stored for 10 days in regular freezers.
The Oxford jab requires a specific vaccine fridge, which keeps them between two and eight degrees Celsius.
Most vaccines are stored in this way, meaning it’s easier for doctors’ surgeries and hospitals to store them.
The Moderna vaccine can last for almost a month in regular household fridges.
Left at room temperature, it remains at optimum effectiveness for up to 12 hours, and it can even be frozen in a household freezer for six months.
The UK pre-ordered 17 million doses of the Moderna vaccine, and they’re expected to arrive in spring.
Elsewhere, the UK already has deals in place for 100 million doses of the Oxford vaccine, and 40 million Pfizer vaccines.
But, either way, the most important thing is to get any one of the three available vaccines. As soon as you’re offered the chance to get vaccinated against coronavirus, you should book an appointment as soon as possible.