The head of the Synodal Department for External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, Metropolitan Hilarion, recommended getting vaccinated against coronavirus as soon as possible, noting that the risk of side effects is "minimal" and not comparable to the risk of contracting COVID-19.
Speaking on the "Church and Peace" program on the Russia 24 TV channel, the Metropolitan noted that all possible side effects of vaccination are already known - a rise in temperature "for one evening", weakness or drowsiness. "But all this cannot be compared with the torment experienced by people who have contracted the coronavirus," the priest said.
“If someone asks me about whether to vaccinate or whether to wait, I say that it is better to vaccinate, and the sooner, the better, because the risk is minimal,” concluded Hilarion.
The first Russian vaccine against coronavirus "Sputnik V", developed = by the National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology named after V.I. Gamalea, was registered on August 11, before the completion of the third phase of clinical trials. During the second stage, it was tested on only a few dozen people, while they faced 141 side effects.
The third stage of testing began only on September 9, 40 thousand volunteers should take part in it. Moreover, a third of them will receive a placebo instead of a vaccine. An article on the results of the first two phases of clinical trials was published in the authoritative journal Lancet, which the Ministry of Health called proof of the quality of the vaccine.
On September 12, the Ministry of Health announced that the first batch of the vaccine was sent to the Russian regions. As part of the pilot delivery, the logistics chains for delivering the vaccine to the constituent entities of the Russian Federation, the distribution and organization of vaccination against COVID-19 of citizens from the high-risk group will be worked out. First of all, it is planned to vaccinate doctors.
The effectiveness of the Russian vaccine raises doubts among the world expert community. In response to the publication in the Lancet, a group of scientists from Italy, the United States, Japan, France and Germany released an open letter in which they pointed to a suspicious similarity in the data obtained from different experiments. The authors of the letter stressed that the data provided is too small to draw any definite conclusions, and these data raise concerns about their unnaturalness.
The Gamaleya Center said it had sent to The Lancet a full-length clinical study protocol for the Sputnik V vaccine and all the data that was obtained in the course of scientific research.