COVID-19: Scientists in race against time to develop vaccine

File: Health experts say frequent and thorough hand-washing is one of the most important tools in the fight against COVID-19.

File: Health experts say frequent and thorough hand-washing is one of the most important tools in the fight against COVID-19.

Pixabay/Jacqueline Macou

JOHANNESBURG - Scientists around the world are working against the clock to develop a vaccine to combat COVID-19.

China has given the go-ahead for researchers to begin human trials of a potential vaccine.

READ: South Africa's confirmed COVID-19 cases soar to 116

They aim to recruit over a-hundred healthy people to take part in the first phase.

US-based Arcturus Therapeutics is also developing a potential vaccine that aims to use a single shot.

The biotech company is hoping to start clinical trials next month.

But, the World Health Organization says a fully tested and approved vaccine will only be available by the middle of next year.

Meanwhile, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in South Africa has soared to 116.

READ: What should you do if you think you have COVID-19?

"As part of tracking and tracing, we have collated background information on how these patients were infected," said Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize.

"We will provide information to the public, so as to give a sense of how these local transmissions occur. We will however not disclose full details as this information is subject to patient confidentiality which we are bound by."

Six of the new cases are local transmissions. 

- Coronavirus Hotline Number: 0800 029 999 from 8am to 4pm, Monday to Friday

Help protect your loved ones by sharing this official South African government COVID-19 service with your family, friends and community.

Send HI to 0600 123 456 on WhatsApp.

The NICD has another Clinician Hotline to improve #COVID19 communication and support for healthcare providers. The Clinician Hotline is 0800 11 1131, operating 24 hrs. The Public Hotline is 0800 029 999 also operating 24hrs.

Source
eNCA

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