Russia may have become the first nation in the world to register the vaccine for novel coronavirus, but medical experts and health agencies around the globe are not entirely convinced of the safety and efficacy of the Russian vaccine. Dubbed as ‘Sputnik V’, the Russian vaccine was developed by the Moscow’s Gamaleya Institute and Russian defence ministry. However, the controversies surrounding the vaccine still refuse to die as the World Health Organization has maintained that the Russian vaccine is NOT in the advanced stages of human trials (Phase III). As medical experts globally are already sceptical about the accelerated rate at which the Russian vaccine has been developed, Russia’s own leading doctor has quit, criticising the untested vaccine.
As per media reports, Russia’s top respiratory doctor Professor Alexander Chuchalin has quit the Russian health ministry, citing ‘gross violations’ of medical ethics concerning ‘Sputnik V’. It is being reported that Professor Alexander had tried to block the registration of ‘world’s first coronavirus vaccine’ on ‘safety’ grounds. Failing to do so, he quit the ethics council of the Russian health ministry.
The country’s top pulmonologist has also named and criticised two leading medics, namely Professor Alexander Gintsburg, who is the director of the Gamaleya Research Centre and Professor Sergey Borisevich, who is Russia’s leading expert in virology. These two scientists have been involved in the development of ‘Sputnik V’ and as per Professor Alexander Chuchalin, have ‘flouted medical ethics’ by rushing the vaccine into production.
As per a report published in Daily Mail, Professor Chuchalin further questioned the two leading vaccine-makers about the safety norms flouted by them. He said, “Have you passed all the necessary paths approved by Russian Federation legislation and the international scientific community? Not!”
“This job has not been done. Thus, one of the ethical principles of medicine has been grossly violated – to do no harm,” Professor reinstated.
He also talked about the statements doing rounds about the safety of the Russian vaccine. “’I am depressed by the position of some of our scientists who make irresponsible statements about ready-made vaccines.”
It should be noted that Russia has given the go-ahead for the vaccine without completing the crucial Phase III trials–where the thousands of volunteers are dosed with the vaccine candidate to check for its side-effects and immune system response it induces.
While Russian President Putin’s daughter has already been inoculated with two jabs of ‘Sputnik V’, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has also offered to take a shot of Sputnik V. Addressing the media, he had said on Monday, “When the vaccine arrives. I will have myself injected in public. Experiment on me first, that’s fine with me.”
Adding more fuel to the fire, Russia has still not made any scientific articles related to the vaccine available for the public domain.
Russia’s leading virologist and former head of infectious diseases at Vector Institute, Alexander Chepurnov had also expressed his concerns over the safety of the vaccine and underlined the danger of ‘íncreased spread of novel coronavirus’ as well.
“The danger is there in terms of the possibility of increasing the disease‘s severity with the wrong vaccine. With some diseases —and for the coronavirus, this is already known that the infection can intensify with the presence of certain antibodies. So it should be known which antibodies the vaccine forms.”
Download Letter to Doctor PDF: https://www.outersite.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/VaccinesDoctorsAndEthics.pdf