The trials are initially open to 500 volunteers.
Volunteers have begun participating in the UAE trials of the Russian human adenovirus-based Sputnik-V vaccine against Covid-19. Supervised by the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi (DoH), trials are initially open to 500 volunteers from the Capital, the Abu Dhabi Government Media Office tweeted on Sunday.
Dr Jamal Al Kaabi, Undersecretary, the DoH, said: “Conducting the Phase 3 clinical trials for the Russian vaccine is clear proof of Abu Dhabi’s world-class medical sector … Abu Dhabi is advancing the efforts of the Russians, who have developed this vaccine and chosen the UAE Capital for the completion of these clinical trials.”
Dr Ahmed Al Hammadi, Principal Investigator, Phase 3 Sputnik-V UAE Trial, noted: “Abu Dhabi is one of the most important centres outside Russia for conducting the clinical trials of this vaccine. Abu Dhabi has been chosen to play a key role, in order to try to understand the effects of the vaccine on people from different nationalities.”
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– (@admediaoffice) January 10, 2021
An Emirati volunteer said the Abu Dhabi Government’s support for the health sector to provide the best vaccines was his “main motivation for taking part in the trial”.
An expat volunteer added: “I am very confident and have trust in the Abu Dhabi Government. I thank them for giving me this opportunity.”
Volunteers have to meet certain criteria to take part in the trials. They have to be above the age of 18; must not have been infected with Covid-19 virus earlier and must not have not participated in any other Covid-19 trials. Additionally, they need to be free of communicable or severe respiratory diseases for at least 14 days.
The vaccines are being administered 20 days apart in two doses and volunteers will be strictly monitored through regular visits and tele-consultations for 180 days after their second dose.
A massive National Vaccination Campaign is currently underway in the UAE. Two types of vaccines are administered for free to residents: Pfizer-BioNTech and the Chinese Sinopharm.