Reportedly being easier to administer and taking only 20 seconds, the vaccine is considerably more appealing than getting injections.
Bringing a sigh of relief to millions who share the phobia of needles, Shanghai, China, has started administering a new inhalable Covid-19 vaccine — a world first.
Reportedly being easier to administer, this latest vaccine will be much more attractive to people who have been avoiding the vaccine due to their fear of needles. It looks to also be a better alternative for economically disparate countries that struggle with needle vaccinations for more denser populations.
Authorities in Shanghai are now offering the inhalable vaccine as a booster for previously vaccinated individuals, according to an announcement posted on an official city social media account.
Although China does not have a vaccine mandate, the government does expect more people to get their boosters before any more pandemic restrictions are eased and the country can be fully opened again.
Videos posted by an online Chinese state media organization showed how the vaccine was administered at a community health centre, with the entire procedure being completed in 20 seconds.
“It was like drinking a cup of milk tea,” one Shanghai resident said in the video. “When I breathed it in, it tasted a bit sweet.”
A vaccine taken in the mouth could also fend off the virus before it reaches the rest of the respiratory system, though that would depend in part on the size of the droplets, one expert said.
The vaccine was developed by Chinese biopharmaceutical company CanSino Biologics Inc. as an aerosol version of the same company’s one-shot adenovirus vaccine, which uses a relatively harmless cold virus. Chinese regulators approved the vaccine for use as a booster in September.
CanSino has said the inhaled vaccine has completed clinical trials in China, Hungary, Pakistan, Malaysia, Argentina, and Mexico.
Regulators in India have also approved a nasal vaccine, another needle-free approach, but it has yet to be rolled out. The vaccine, developed in the U.S. and licensed to Indian vaccine maker Bharat Biotech, is squirted in the nose.
Larger droplets would train defenses in parts of the mouth and throat, while smaller ones would travel further into the body, said Dr. Vineeta Bal, an immunologist in India.
Currently, about a dozen nasal vaccines are being tested globally, according to the World Health Organization.
Source: Associated Press
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