EU health commissioner: Vaccine could be available by end of 2020

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, Health Commissioner of says "Even though making predictions is risky at this point, we have some good indicators that an initial vaccine could be available by the end of this year or the beginning of next."

European Union Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides said a vaccine for Covid-19 could become available by the end of 2020.

"Even though making predictions is risky at this point, we have some good indicators that an initial vaccine could be available by the end of this year or the beginning of next," Kyriakides told the online edition of Handelsblatt newspaper.

A vaccine would not solve all problems in one go, but would permit a gradual return to normality, she said, as long as a "critical mass of citizens, particularly those in risk groups" were vaccinated.

Scientists remain unclear as to when a vaccine could become available, as the development process could take years or could, theoretically, prove to be impossible.

The health commissioner also noted an increasing number of smaller and larger outbreaks of the coronavirus in several EU member states.

She appealed to governments to "quickly isolate the source of infection locally with tests, contact tracing and immediate isolation" of those affected.

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