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Amid rising numbers, UAE starts Phase III of Russia's Sputnik Covid vaccine trials Open in fullscreen

The New Arab Staff

Amid rising numbers, UAE starts Phase III of Russia's Sputnik Covid vaccine trials

Russia has said the Sputnik V vaccine is 95 percent effective [Getty]

Date of publication: 7 January, 2021

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The UAE is embarking on the third phase of its Covid-19 vaccine trials for the Russian Sputnik vacccine.
The UAE is pressing ahead with phase III of trials for a Russian Covid-19 vaccine, as the numbers of infected in the Gulf state begin to rise.

The human trial will see 500 volunteers given two doses of the Sputnik V vaccine spaced 20 days apart, Abu Dhabi's media office said in a statement.

Moscow said the vaccine is over 95 percent effective.

The UAE is also conducting phase III clinical trials for a vaccine developed by China's Sinopharm.

The innoculation has already been approved by Emirati authorities and is available to anyone who wants it free of charge.

Authorities also began vaccinating citizens with the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine in the emirate of Dubai last month.

More than 800,000 doses have been administered across the Gulf state, according to health authorities. That data does not specify which type of vaccine was used.

Read more: Which countries in the Middle East will get the Covid-19 vaccine?
The UAE, which has a population of nine million, has said it hopes to vaccinate 50 percent of the population within the first quarter of 2021.

The vaccine rollout comes amid a dramatic rise in cases in the Gulf state.

Numbers of people testing positive for Covid-19 have more than doubled in the past ten days, with Thursday marking a record high for new infections at 2,988.

The UAE has recorded 218,766 cases and 689 deaths from the virus so far.

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