Israel’s vaccine rollout shows signs of success

As America struggles to administer vaccine doses due to logistical bottlenecks and supply shortages, Israel’s rollout of vaccines shows signs of dramatic success.

Just over four months ago, Israel’s COVID-19 outbreak was one of the worst on earth, and the country went into a severe lockdown. Subsequently, the Israeli government entered into an agreement with Pfizer-BioNTech on sufficient doses to inoculate each Israeli adult at the end of March.

In two months, the data is as promising as researchers predicted. In a study of 1.2 million people, the 600,000 who received the vaccine were 94% less likely to get symptomatic infections.

Professor Gili Regev-Yochay, director of the Sheba Medical Center’s epidemiological unit, said supplies are stable and the program is working.

“It’s amazing,” he said, adding, “And they are now lowering the levels at which ages people can already be vaccinated.”

A few days ago, Israel’s lockdown was eased. It is a welcome new reality for the nation – and for us a possible glimpse of the future.

There is also more hope for other countries as global vaccination efforts slowly grow beyond the richly developed world. Syrian refugees are now being shot and the first shipments have just arrived in Zimbabwe.

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