Health boss reveals why Covid-19 vaccine is ‘unlikely’ to be available to everyone in Sheffield
A coronavirus vaccine is unlikely to be available to everyone in Sheffield if it becomes available, the city’s director of Public Health has predicted.
A vaccine produced by pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies Pfizer and BioNTech could be available before Christmas if approved by regulators – but health experts have warned life will not suddenly return to normal.
Speaking on Monday, Mr Fell said: “I don’t think it will be available in sufficient quantity for all of us to get vaccinated [...] if it is we’ll be focusing on those that are most vulnerable to severe illness first.
"Treatments have improved, that will improve outcome but we will be reliant on public health interventions for some time to come.”
The UK should get 10 million doses of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine by the end of 2020 if approved for use.
Mr Fell also admitted he does not know what may happen to Sheffield when the national lockdown ends on Wednesday, 2 December.
He said: “If I had to call it, I’d sense we would be back into a tiered regime as we’d left, I don’t know that’s just a sense. The basics will remain.”
The city is, however, past the second peak of the virus, he believes.
Mr Fell said: “The signs are that the second wave peak of cases is probably past now. I may regret saying that but that’s about where we are today (9 November).
"We’re seeing a plateau in lots of the indicators, R is somewhere between 1.1 and 1.3 everywhere. We’ll see a settling of numbers over the next couple of weeks.”