The COVID-19 vaccine is the best development we could have because there is currently an outbreak of the pandemic in many countries all over the world, professor of microbiology and molecular virology at the Medical School of the University of Cyprus, Dr. Petros Karayiannis has told the Cyprus News Agency (CNA).
Karayiannis said that the soonest there is vaccine coverage of 70% of the population of a country and worldwide at the same time, the spread of the virus will be confined as well as the adverse conditions people have been enduring in the last 10 months.
Asked if the COVID-19 mutation is worrying and whether the vaccines which are now in the market can be effective towards new variants, Karayiannis aid that any mutation of the virus is worrying as it allows it to spread quicker.
He noted that however the vaccine is currently effective, adding that the technology of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines allows the addition of the new variants to the RNA.
With regard to the rapid tests he noted that during the last couple of days their results are worrying, expressing hope that the vaccines will allow the reduction in the long-term of the COVID-19 cases which are being traced.
Currently we can only achieve this through the restrictive measures taken, with the strict implementation of the protocols, he said.
Karayiannis added that even though inoculations have begun the situation will not improve in just a few days, noting that everyone must continue to implement the measures of self-protection, using face masks, washing their hands and keeping a distance from each other.
He noted that the restrictive measures will be lifted gradually but that self-protection measures will continue to be in place for at least six more months.
Responding to a question about the vaccines, Karayiannis said that research which will carried out will show their effectiveness and whether those who have been vaccinated have generated antibodies.
Karayiannis also noted that the Republic of Cyprus has ordered 1.2 million vaccine doses. Asked if he will get vaccinated he replied to the affirmative, noting at the same time that priority must be given to those who are vulnerable.
Asked about the way the vaccine formula operates, Karayiannis said that there is no danger of it being integrated to the DNA, or affect body cells in any way.
Karayiannis said that the Health Ministry`s epidemiological team on COVID-19 monitors the epidemiological situation almost on a daily basis, noting that currently there is a high number of positive results from the rapid tests.
Cyprus began on Sunday the first inoculations against COVID-19 after the first vaccines of Pfizer-BioNTech arrived on Saturday.
President of the Republic, Nicos Anastasiades, received on Monday morning the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the health centre of Latsia, in Nicosia.