Early yesterday, results were announced for a clinical trial involving 43,538 volunteers that boasted a 90% success rate for effectively vaccinating individuals against the coronavirus.
Phase 3 trials launched this past July by developers Pfizer and BioNTech, injecting participants from backgrounds spanning six different countries two times, 21 days apart.
Comparing the number of cases of COVID-19 among volunteers who received the vaccine against those who received the placebo, over 90% of the vaccinated group has not contracted the disease, and immune protection has been achieved 28 days after the first of the two-dose schedule.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) set the minimum effectiveness bar for COVID-19 vaccines at 50%. Now, that number has been blown out of the water.
There is still significant research to be done regarding the effects of the vaccine. Data will continue to be collected, but based on their current projections, Pfizer will be ready to manufacture up to 50 million vaccine doses by the end of the year and "up to 1.3 billion doses in 2021."
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, called the results "extraordinary" and, following the information that Moderna uses similar technology in its vaccine, it "gives you hope we might even have two vaccines."