Although vaccines against Covid-19 have been rolled out in a number of countries, the World Health Organization warned Monday that herd immunity will not be achieved this year.
Agence France-Presse: Countries around the world are looking to vaccines that will finally allow a return to normality in the coming months.
But the chief scientist at the World Health Organization, Sumiya Swaminathan, has warned that it will take some time to produce and administer sufficient doses to stop the spread of the virus.
“We will not achieve any levels of population or herd immunity in 2021,” she said in a hypothetical press release from the World Health Organization headquarters in Geneva, stressing the need to continue measures such as physical distancing, hand washing and wearing masks to curb an epidemic.
She praised the “amazing progress” made by scientists who have managed to develop not one but several safe and effective vaccines against a completely new virus in less than a year.
But she stressed that the start-up “takes some time”.
She pointed out that “expanding the production of doses takes time, not only in the millions, but here we are talking about billions,” calling on people to “be patient a little.”
“The vaccines will come eventually. They will go to all countries,” Swaminathan assured.
“But in the meantime, we must not forget that there are successful measures,” she said.
Public health and social measures aimed at stopping transmission will be needed “for the rest of this year at least”.