Right now, the U.S. has three vaccines available to fight off COVID-19 infections.
AstraZeneca is another company with ongoing trials for its COVID-19 vaccine. That vaccine has gotten some mix messaging on how effective it is in older adults.
The U.S. trial is trying to clear that up.
UW Health and the UW School of Medicine and Public Health is conducting a study on AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine.
Dr. William Hartman is the principal investigator for the trial that started more than six months ago.
“Our role is to recruit people, follow up on them consistently,” said Dr. Hartman. “Each of these people have gone through probably 6 or 7 in person or phone appointments at this point to follow up and see if they did develop COVID, did they have symptoms of COVID or did they develop any side effects from the vaccine itself.”
Right now researchers are compiling all they’ve learned into an effectiveness report. The data they got will be added with the total of 31,000 people that were enrolled in the U.S. trial.
Dr. Hartman says the data that came from the UK trials are harder to interpret because of how the trials were designed.
He says the U.S. trials will be able to better determine its efficacy and how it impacts people 65 and older.
“In the UK data, there was very little data on people over the age of 65,” said Dr. Hartman. “In some countries they’ve elected not to administer vaccine to people over the age of 65. We have 25% of the population that was studied here over the age of 65 so hopefully will have answer to that question.”
Dr. Hartman said they should be finished compiling the data by mid-March.
Provided that data is good, he says AstraZeneca would apply for emergency use authorization from the FDA in early April.
You can hear more from Dr. Hartman on the vaccines currently available and what they mean for the end of the pandemic next week during WXPR’s ‘Here for a Year: The Impact of COVID-19 on our lives”.
The hour-long special report airs Wednesday, March 10th at 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on-air and online.