COVID-19 vaccine trials underway

Local News

LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- New COVID-19 vaccine trials are continuing to pop up around central Arkansas and the United States.

“It’s kind of a ray of light in a long dark winter,” said Dr. Jennifer Dillaha, Arkansas Department of Health. 

Nine months into the pandemic and it appears we are getting closer to the finish line as four vaccines are in a trial period.

One of those trials is almost complete.

Dr. Jennifer Dillaha with the Arkansas Department of Health said the FDA is reviewing the information and she’s hopeful it won’t be too long until the vaccine is available. 

“We think it will be available to the general public, probably around April,” said Dr. Dillaha.

Dr. Dillaha said the State of Arkansas will receive an allocation of the vaccines. Then the health department will be responsible for dividing up those vaccines using the CDC recommendations. 

“Because in the beginning there wont be enough doses for everyone,” said Dr. Dillaha.

Dr. Dillaha said the first round of vaccines will most likely go to those who need it the most, like healthcare workers.

“Now when people get these vaccines, they might not feel so great because it’s stimulating the immune system to fight something and you feel the effects of it,” said Dr. Dillaha.

Dr. Dillaha said three of the four vaccines require two shots and you might not feel great after getting the shot. 

However, preliminary reports show the vaccines are 95% effective. 

“There’s very few vaccines that are that effective,” said Dr. Dillaha. 

Even though preliminary reports show the vaccine is 95% effective, Dr. Dillaha said we will still need to wear masks for a while.

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