Real-world studies of vaccines aren't directly comparable with clinical trials, but their results are still good news.
The arrival of COVID-19 vaccines has raised hope for an end to the pandemic. Hopefully that's true, but there are variables. Here are some factors that could affect the success of the vaccine rollout.
New trial data appears to support pushing back the second dose to 12 weeks.
The vaccine is still very likely to be protective in over-65s, even if efficacy in this age group is unknown.
Whether you are predicting the outcome of an election or studying how effective a new drug is, there will always be some uncertainty. A margin of error is how statisticians measure that uncertainty.
Data coming through from phase 3 trials are encouraging. But participants don't represent the whole community — so we can't be sure these vaccines will work as well in everyone.
COVID-19 vaccines are at risk of being undermined by vaccine hesitancy. Pharma must take steps to ensure transparency in data monitoring committees and trial data to build public trust in vaccines.
We will struggle to find a vaccine that works perfectly for people who need it most, despite what the headlines say is coming in 2021.
Two more COVID-19 vaccines may now be on the cards for Australia, should they pass clinical trials. But, as with earlier vaccine deals, there are no guarantees.
Several vaccines are in Phase 3 trials. So when will we know whether any of these will protect against COVID-19?
As Russia fast tracks a coronavirus vaccine, scientists worry about skipped safety checks – and the potential fallout for trust in vaccines if something ends up going wrong.