An entire city in Brazil will be getting vaccinated against the novel COVID-19 in a massive experiment to see if the vaccines can indeed reduce the spread of the disease and help in flattening the curves.
Serrana is the city in the state of São Paulo where the campaign will be carried out and its home to about 30,000 adults who will partake in the exercise within the next three months as part of a research study by the Butantan Institute in Brazil.
Everyone in the city who are above the age of 18 (except for those who are pregnant or breastfeeding women and those with serious illnesses) will be offered the CoronaVac vaccine which was developed by Sinovac, a Chinese pharmaceutical.
There was a clinical trial of the Sinovac vaccine and other COVID-19 vaccnes decrease the odds of developing symptomatic disease however data on whether vaccines could fully prevent infections remains limited.
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Some of the earliest hints suggest at least some vaccines can prevent infections; a few weeks ago the University of Oxford published data indicating the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine could slow the spread of the virus.
The ability of each of the vaccine will differ from the other in terms of its ability to prevent infection which all will be taken into account during the jab campaign.
The Butantan Institute made it known that the CoronaVac vaccine had a 50.4% efficacy against symptomatic infection in Brazil while the vaccine was 100% effective against death according to a report from The Associated Press (AP).
The AP also made it known that people will be allowed in and out of the city and that the participation in the study which has already begun won’t be required though its expected to be high. Participants will however be monitored over the period of one year even though the first results are expected to come in as early as 12 weeks.
“Based on what we are going to learn here, we will be able to tell the rest of the world what the actual effect of the vaccination against COVID-19 is,” Ricardo Palacios, the director of clinical studies at the Butantan Institute, told CNN.
People have begin to rush in order to purchase or rent properties in Serrana with the hopes of becoming residents in order to be qualified for a participation in the study as well as get vaccinated according to The Guardian. But officials said they would need a history of residence to register for the trial, according to the AP.
Aside the United States, Brazil is another country that is badly hit by the novel coronavirus with nearly 10 million cases and more than 242,000 fatalities according to the according to The Johns Hopkins Dashboard. Vaccine supplies are dwindling and have already run out in several cities, according to the AP. But a special batch of vaccines was designated for this study, and so there is no risk of it running out in Serrana.
Originally published on Live Science.