Covid-19 vaccine could be rolled out in 'first half of next year'

A Covid-19 vaccine could be rolled out across the country in the first half of next year if trials are successful, according to a scientist leading research in the UK.

A Covid-19 vaccine could be rolled out across the country in the first half of next year if trials are successful.

Professor Robin Shattock, who heads a team developing a vaccine at Imperial College London, said that enough doses would be available for everyone in the UK if trials go "really well".

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But he warned there was "no certainty" that any of the vaccines currently being developed will be successful, as it is dependent on the level of immunity needed to prevent infection.

Appearing on Sky News' Sophy Ridge On Sunday, he said: "So we anticipate if everything goes really well that we'll get an answer as to whether it works by early next year.

"And we have put in place the infrastructure to make that vaccine for the whole of the UK.

"So, assuming that the funding is there to purchase that vaccine, we could have that vaccine rolled out across the UK in the first half of next year."

Some 15 volunteers have been vaccinated for the trial so far, which will be ramped up to include another 200-300 participants in the "coming weeks", he said.

Scientists developing a vaccine currently do not know what level of immunity people need to prevent infection, which makes the chance of success "difficult to predict", according to Prof Shattock.