To build an immune protection barrier in China would require more than 1 billion people to be vaccinated against the COVID-19. The higher the vaccination rate, the stronger the immune barrier is, and the country still has a long way to go, an expert with China's Center for Disease Control and Prevention said on Sunday.
China started a daily briefing for COVID-19 vaccination data on March 24, where the country's National Health Commission publishes the total number of vaccinations on its official website every day to cope with the country's massive inoculation drive.
In the past week, the number of domestic COVID-19 inoculation has increased rapidly from three to four million to seven million a day, and is still relatively low level compared with some countries with an inoculation rate of 40 percent or even 60 percent.
To ease public worries about the safety of homegrown vaccines, Wang Huaqing, chief expert of vaccination planning at the Chinese CDC, said in an interview with CCTV that the research and development of the vaccine went through pre-clinical and three rounds of clinical trials before its market launch. Further research will be continuously carried out after the vaccine is marketed, which guarantees its safety.
Wang also mentioned that any vaccine has its risks. Statistics show that the ratio of adverse reactions or severe allergic reactions to Chinese COVID-19 vaccines are one in a million. However, the harm caused by the COVID-19 is much larger as its mortality rate reaches 2 percent. Again, a string of measures can be taken to minimize the adverse risks of the vaccines.
While some people in China are still hesitating whether it is necessary to get vaccinated or questioning whether it can be used, at least 70 countries and regions around the world have approved the use or agreed to purchase the Chinese vaccines, and many foreign leaders have been inoculated with Chinese vaccines early on.
Wang said that if everyone is delaying the schedule of vaccinations, China's immune barrier will never be established, and people's desire to remove the masks may never come true.
Regarding people's concerns about virus mutation, Wang noted if the disease continues to spread, the rate of virus mutations will increase, which leads to the increase of infections. In severe cases, the vaccine may fail.
"Therefore, the best way to prevent the virus from mutating faster is to get vaccinated", said Wang. "After inoculation, we can effectively stop the infection, which will also prevent the virus from mutating and further spreading."
(Compiled by Liao Yuecen)