Merck Covid Vaccine

The pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus, also known as Covid-19, has changed the world since it was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization in March 2020. Having caused a reported 1.9 million deaths and caused economic damages estimated to be around 600 billion dollars, it has changed the way people have to go about their daily lives and all the industries around the globe.

However, the dawn of a new year has also brought a ray of hope to break the Covid curse. Merck and another pharmaceutical company called Eisai, have been developing a Covid vaccine to help fight the virus. Initially, Eisai had lagged behind in the vaccine race, behind the leading vaccine companies like Pfizer and Moderna, but with the release of the Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine in January 2021, this has changed.

About the Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine

Technologically Named as V590, the Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine differs slightly from the two Covid vaccines developed by Moderna and Pfizer; while they are messenger RNA (mRNA) based vaccines, this one is an inactivated virus-based vaccine. Developed by Merck, the vaccine uses a weakened form of the live virus to trigger an immune response without causing any harm.

Unlike the mRNA vaccines, the Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine doesn’t need to be stored in ultra-low temperatures, it can be stored and transported the same way traditional vaccines are; at a temperature of 2-8 degrees Celsius (36-46 degrees Fahrenheit).

The Benefits of the Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine

The Merck-Eisai Covid vaccine is a promising candidate, with several benefits and factors making it a better option than the other two Covid vaccines.

  1. It’s effective and safe
    Merck, along with its partner Eisai, conducted a Phase 3 clinical trial with 22,000 participants aged 18 and over, showing it was 95% effective in preventing symptomatic Covid-19. The vaccine was also found to be safe, leading to no severe adverse events even in participants considered high-risk by the researchers.

  2. It’s easily transportable
    As previously mentioned, the Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine does not need to be stored at ultra-low temperatures as the other Covid vaccines. It can be transported and stored the same way traditional vaccines are, greatly reducing the cost and complexity of the logistics required for globally shipping the vaccine.

  3. Cost-efficient
    The cost of a dose of the Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine has been estimated to be quite low, as low as $10 per dose. This is significantly lower than the estimated $20 per dose of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines. This makes it an attractive solution for governments or individuals who can’t afford to pay the higher cost of the other vaccines.

Availability and Distribution

The Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine is approved in the US, Europe, the UK, Canada, Japan, and South Korea, while other countries are likely to follow suit soon.

In the US itself, the vaccine is already being administered, with the US Federal Government having already pre-ordered 60 million doses for use in 2021. Merck has also stated that it plans to produce more than 1 billion more doses of the vaccine by the end of 2021.

The Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine is projected to reach countries around the world in the coming months, giving people hope of leading a normal life again soon.

The Merck-Eisai Covid Vaccine is a ray of hope that 2021 might finally bring an end to the long fight against the pandemic. It is an effective and safe vaccine, easily transportable and cost-efficient. The Vaccine is already Approved for use in several countries and the US Federal Government has pre-ordered it for this year’s use. With the global production of more than a billion doses of the vaccine by the end of the year, 2021 might finally be the year in which normal life becomes a reality again.