Ay Caramba: Cuba moves to phase 3, ready to roll out homebrewed COVID vaccine | Cuba is accelerating vaccine roll-out on hospital staff

Cuba accelerating vaccine roll-out on hospital staff Source: Cuba accelerating vaccine roll-out on hospital staff – France 24

Havana (AFP)

Maria Ruiz admitted she was “afraid” but the 48-year-old nurse was determined to play her part in helping Cuba’s ambitious drive to produce its own Covid-19 vaccine.

“It’s not the same when I give it to a patient or when I receive it,” she said, waiting for her shot of the Soberana 2 vaccine.

“Whenever it’s good for me and for wider society, I’m there!”

Launched a week ago, the initiative aims to vaccinate 150,000 hospital workers, including technicians and maintenance staff, even before it has conducted clinical trials.

Cuba wants it to be the first vaccine made in Latin America to combat the deadly global virus.

The Russian Sputnik V vaccine was another to be administered widely before clinical trials were complete.

And unlike in traditional trials, this time “we’re not using a placebo, it’s the vaccine straight up,” said Osiris Barberia Elejalde, a doctor and deputy director of epidemiology at the Heroes of Corinth hospital in the capital Havana.

The program has targeted hospital staff “because they are the ones in contact with the infected patients. That is to say, on the front line,” she added.

 

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