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UK chief scientific advisor: A vaccine may not completely stop the coronavirus

UK chief scientific advisor, Patrick Vallance, weighs in with his latest thoughts about a vaccine and how the world may look like in the future

He argues that while there are positive developments in the vaccine space, none are likely to eradicate the coronavirus:

The notion of eliminating Covid from anywhere is not right, because it will come back. Clearly as management becomes better, as you get vaccination which would decrease the chance of infection and the severity of disease … this then starts to look more like annual flu than anything else, and that may be the direction we end up going.

Adding that his best assessment is that it is unlikely the world will end up with a truly sterilising vaccine i.e. one that completely stops the infection altogether, instead the coronavirus will continue to circulate and end up being ‘endemic’.

Vallance also made reference to the fact that there had only ever been one human disease that has been ‘truly eradicated’ thanks to a highly effective vaccine, being smallpox.

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