SYDNEY, August 10. /TASS/. Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine is one of the most effective in the world and is ranked in the same category with the best Western jabs but politics prevents it from being used more widely, Australian epidemiologists and virologists told the Sydney Morning Herald, the interview was published on Tuesday.
"It’s an excellent vaccine, more than 92 per cent effective at stopping a symptomatic case of COVID. That puts it almost on par with the Western vaccines using new mRNA technology by Pfizer and Moderna," says Michael Toole, epidemiologist at Burnet Institute. He underlined that the fast creation of the shot should not cast doubts on its efficacy because the scientists that developed Sputnik V already had the basis in the form of MERS and SARS vaccines which they worked on previously.
The epidemiologist stressed that as of now "none of the other 60-odd countries using the vaccine have reported a link to clotting either, including during trials in Argentina, Italy and the tiny republic of San Marino (which has been almost entirely vaccinated with Sputnik)." "I’m not sure why the WHO is taking so long," Toole notes. "They’ve already approved China’s Sinovac and that’s not as effective and has its own transparency issues."
Gary Grohmann, virologist who consults the WHO, also praised the Russian jab. Grohmann "has no doubt Sputnik is a very good vaccine, based on both its trial and real-world data so far."
According to the scientists, "politics are playing a role in resistance to Sputnik." "That’s part of the inequality of the [global vaccine rollout]," says Deakin University epidemiologist Catherine Bennett. "We all have an obligation to understand these vaccines or you can have this kind of closed shop." According to her, shots similar to the Russian vaccine can save a population but politics makes it difficult to make right decisions.