The major advancement in the field of medicine is the development of vaccines which has significantly increased average life expectancy of people around the globe. According to the WHO, after the development of vaccines for various yet deadliest diseases, around 10 million human lives have been saved in just five years, i.e., 2010-2015. The time taken to develop a vaccine depends on the complexity caused during the process. It is easier said than done; hence, some vaccines took as less as four months to develop whereas, some were invented after 40 years. The pandemics in the past have petered out without any effective vaccine.
The entire world is currently fighting against one of the deadliest pandemics in history, the Coronavirus, which has taken the lives of 1.74 million people worldwide, and the figure is still rising every day. Albeit, scientists from various countries have successfully invented a vaccine against the disease, that will be distributed all around the world soon. Experts are also scrutinizing the process through which the Covid-19 vaccines are being developed to ensure safety.
The world has faced various global pandemics and has suffered some without any vaccine at all. The infographic shows us the timeline of vaccine development for the pandemic in the past and how long did it take for the scientists to come up with an effective vaccine.
For the Spanish Flu which broke out in 1917, it took 25 years to develop a vaccine against it. In these 25 years, nearly 40-50 million people lost their battle with life. On the other hand, the vaccine for H2N2 Asian Flu in 1957 and H3N2 Hong Kong Flu in 1968 were invented in less than five months of the breakout; however, the death toll for both the diseases hit 1 million in only five months.
There are still some diseases for which a vaccine is yet to come, for example, SARS first reported in 2003, AIDS in 1981, and MERS in 2012 are still the uncured diseases. Scientists from the globe are continuously making efforts for the past 17 years for SARS cure, 39 years for AIDS and eight years for MERS.
Luckily, the Covid-19 vaccine has been developed in a year, and funding has played a vital role in the vaccine's speedy development. Since the death toll is rising every single day, countries are desperately waiting for the vaccine to reach their land. Several countries have already bought millions of doses and expect them to be delivered in a month or two. The US government bought around 100 million vaccine doses from Pfizer and BioNTech for $2 million.
Many experts are worried about the long-term safety from the Covid-19 vaccine because of the speedy development. The vaccines will be monitored on the batch-by-batch basis for quality assurance.
Infographic by: Visualcapitalist.com