Will Canada be getting a COVID-19 vaccine soon?

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Researchers work in a lab run by Moderna Inc, who said November 16, 2020 that its experimental vaccine was 94.5% effective in preventing COVID-19 based on interim data from a late-stage clinical trial. PHOTO BY MODERNA INC /via REUTERS

(René Bruemmer/ Mpntreal Gazette) — With drug maker Moderna announcing Monday clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine were 94.5 per cent effective, just one week after Pfizer trumpeted similarly successful results, there’s renewed hope a working vaccine could be available soon for a COVID-weary populace.

The Montreal Gazette spoke with Dr. Caroline Quach, a pediatric microbiologist and infectologist at Ste-Justine Hospital and the chair of Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization, to find out what Canadians can expect.

Q. How hopeful should we be that these vaccines may be safe and effective?

A. I think we can be hopefully optimistic while remaining prudent in the sense that we haven’t seen the data.

The fact that preliminary analysis is similar between the two vaccines, the fact that they are both messenger RNA-based and have similar efficacy, is promising. And also that up till now there hasn’t been anything serious enough for the manufacturers to stop the trials. Again, I’m hopefully optimistic. (…)

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