Singapore’s 3 COVID-19 Vaccines – And Is One Better Than The Others?

Singapore has ordered the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Sinovac vaccines as the first three of its portfolio in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

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Both the Pfizer-BioNTech (also in use in Britain and the US) and Moderna (used in the US) vaccines use messenger RNA (mRNA) technology that involves injecting snippets of the COVID-19 genetic code, triggering an immune response without actually exposing the patient to the virus. Both vaccines are said to have an efficacy rate of about 95%.

The China-made Sinovac vaccine uses an inactivated COVID-19 virus to trigger an immune response. There is a lack of specific results on its efficacy at the moment. As of January 7, 2020, the Sinovac vaccine has not been used in any country.

Co-chair of the COVID-19 multi-ministry task force Lawrence Wong tells #TalkingPoint why the Singapore Government convened an expert panel as early as April 2020 to look into early purchases of COVID-19 vaccines based on early-stage clinical information.

Director of communicable diseases at the Ministry of Health (MOH) Vernon Lee said “all the vaccines approved in Singapore are safe and efficacious”, but that some may be more suited to certain subpopulations. The Pfizer vaccine for instance – the only one in use in Singapore as of Jan 8 – is not for use in those with severe allergic reactions.

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