A global mass-vaccination roll-out could help return the world to normality by next winter, the leading jab creator has said.
Ugur Sahin, chief executive of BioNTech, which has announced promising preliminary results of its coronavirus vaccine with Pfizer, told the BBC’s Andrew Marr that the companies were aiming to distribute 300 million doses by April, with the jab making a “bigger impact” by summer.
He added that if a high vaccination rate is achieved by autumn – “and I am confident that this will happen," he stressed – “we can have a normal winter next year”.
His comments came amid Labour calls for social media firms to face financial and criminal penalties if they do not stamp out dangerous "anti-vax" content, amid a wide scale disinformation “churn-out” online.
In other developments, Professor John Edmunds, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) said it was “too early to judge” if December 2 would be too soon to lift England’s national lockdown and replace it with the regional three-tiered system. However, he was clear that a return to the lowest alert level, Tier 1, would be “very unwise”.