U.K. becomes first country to approve Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine


The uk government appears to be trying to use the news that a covid vaccination has been licensed for use in this country to create good pr around brexit but england's health minister matt hancock who claimed fast tracking the pfizer vaccine was only possible because the uk was able to act outside of european union. Regulations has been firmly contradicted by the chief executive of the h. r. a. the body that handled the process. Well joint for more. On this by vincent mcilvanney. He's a political reporter and one of monocle twenty four regular contributors. Welcome back to the globalist vinnie. Can you tell us how. The story unfolded i. We had the great news that the vaccine had been licensed then matt. Hancock really dived into controversy. That's i think there was a genuine needle relief and celebration yesterday that the government made this announcement and they'd obviously planned this. Kathleen they have. The scientists going through detail televised press conference yesterday morning just to the public in very layman's terms. How the vaccine had been approved what it would do how it would be rolled out and then we have prime minister's questions where boris johnson and stone had a pretty friendly about They did simply questions about how the rollout would happen. it was. It was quite a public education session then in the afternoon the government seem to trip over itself They started to say. There was a bit of pushback from the germans at the brit. Saying that this was you know a real day for british signs that this was great for. They don't this and then. My ankle comments on braxton. Also jacob re smog sang we could only approved vaccine so quickly because we've left the eu last month we change regulations vaccine didn't need eu approval which has slower and this ready then lead them into problems because that has been debunked has been fact checked by various organizations to say that. That's not the case. It was actually permitted under eu law And that was the point. Made as you mentioned by the head of the ease at medicines regulator on wednesday that this states could act unilaterally and false tracking it. So it's very strange that they have tried to do something which shouldn't be political. Shouldn't be kind of you know doused in one camp or another particular when it comes to leave or remain when it comes to brexit which is still divisive issue here in the uk at a point where we still don't have a brexit deal and then negotiations are ongoing to try and sully it somewhat by putting it in minds of some of the public with brexit is not a good idea and as you say germany took exception to this. Yes they did. They perspective said quite rightly in this european achievements. And perhaps the british government's if they done this. I with the oxford astra zeneca vaccine something which we expect to happen in the next ten days or so then they could claim you know a real big moment for british science and claim that the own but to claim that this landlocked. Because you've fast track vaccine that was developed at the over. The you know in the comfort. And that's gonna be coming from. Belgium is a bit of a strange move by the government. This is the government absolutely desperate for some good news. We have the worst death figures in europe and yesterday was another six hundred forty will so debts in the previous twenty four hours we the west infection rates and so you know they are really desperate now to make sure that they can trump it some of these achievements as their own and i notice. Boris johnson appear to roll back a little bit when he was asked about it later and he talked about international efforts and really quite successfully dodged the question. Yes he did. i think he knows. And perhaps the scientists said got to them that you cannot tie this to to brexit something. That is incredibly divisive and that pass. It wasn't true you know. There's enough missing formation going on about of cave nineteen vaccines that. The government really shouldn't be contributing to it and this something that she came up pm cues and the prime minister sort of echoed that said labour had put out last month and m seems the government will be moving forward that there will be some kind of penalty and fines in put in place to stop the misinformation and the spreading of anti vaccine summation on social media and on the social media platforms themselves. Something that they will have to watch out for. We're waiting for details on that still but it's not a good idea that the government would be putting out false information itself on that same day. Of course this isn't the kind of stuff damaging stuff that we're seeing spreading conspiracies about what the vaccine will do to you. But it's still doesn't help you sell your message somewhat. Absolutely i mean this. I suppose was an attempt just to trumpet. britney's truly global. Yes to trumpet global britain. Something that trying to do. It's also you know the final few days really off. The brexit negotiations going on central london images lost night if boxes and boxes of pizza being delivered to the negotiators so they won't see talking late into the night prisoners facing a real problem and i think part of why the government probably wants pasta quickly. Is that if by the end of this week. We don't have a deal. One becomes very unlikely and so at the end of this month. The uk will leave the european union now. All countries have struggled with their economies. Jerry the pandemic but imagine the double whammy in twenty twenty one of britain also suffering the effects of that no deal brexit. We know that it would be hugely detrimental to the economy and so britain than any country around the world needs to get its workforce vaccinated. Needs to have them feeling confident. Needs the well to think that this is a place that you can come and trade and do business in because it's safe and they need people back out there as much as possible working and so the vaccine really is so critical to be rolled out here to make sure that life can get back to as much as normal as possible because the economy is facing this double threat unlike any others around the well. The yes are repercussions in europe full brexit but not to the extent of the areas here in the uk. I mean the prime minister has warned that there may be logistical problems. Getting the vaccine out particularly to care homes. Yeah that's right. And i think we have to look at the separate vaccine. Say of the fis at biotech. One has very specific needs so has to be stored at just under minus seventy degrees centigrade and has a lifespan of about a month as well and so they don't want basically it cannot be moved again so we're getting the first eight hundred thousand off the forty million order coming from belgium in the next few days. Now that number you have to divide it by two. Because you need to inoculation say britain's ordered forty at that means twenty million people can be vaccinated and the clock is ticking to make the most of that investment in this vaccine to get it to the most critical people but because of the coach storage requirements. It seems that they're going to need to put it into key. Sentences rather than sending out in small batches perhaps to you know local pharmacy. Or a cabaret miss. They thought they would. So what will happen is it will go to places like hospitals where they have that cold storage than going to put it into centers so the nightingale hospitals that have been built and also places like sports stayed the emc. Say think as well in those kind of facilities and instead of bat say you have in town eight also cathodes instead of the vaccine going in small batches of the cabins because of these requirements on the storage. Because it doesn't like they moved too much you will instead means academy ten dis on trips to those senses to the hospital in order for them to get inoculated. Have to do that twice at intervals of two weeks. And after the second vaccine injection seven days later they will then be a not some killer's this they will then not be able to for the effects that there's a slight effects of the vaccine it's being described as a bit like hanging over by some participants in the study. But you will then be guarded against covid nineteen but they used the is one for the most critical people. Nhs staff a care home staff the most elderly in society those most at risk and they need to use as much as possible as quickly as possible at because then what i think will happen is the much cheaper and easier to store and distribute ox sudanic vaccine which is the one that britain has invested. Most in will be the one that most of the population gets

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