16 Nov 2020

Hopes raised as second Covid vaccine trial shows nearly 95% protection

Health and Social Care Editor

There’s new hope in the battle for a coronavirus vaccine. Less than a week after Pfizer said it had a vaccine that was 90% effective, early data shows a jab from the US firm Moderna offers even more protection.

And even better, it appears it can be kept in a standard fridge, making it much easier to store.

The government has scrambled to secure the vaccine, with Matt Hancock announcing this afternoon that the UK has signed an “initial agreement” to purchase five million doses, but only from April.

The news came as a major human trial of another vaccine against Covid-19 began in the UK today. The Janssen vaccine is the third to reach a final stage trial here.

Latest official figures show that in the last 24 hours 21,363 new cases were confirmed and another 213 deaths were reported, which takes the total to 52,147.