COVID-19: Nigerian Doctor, Onyema Eberechukwu Ogbuagu, Key Figure In Pfizer’s Vaccine
Nigerian Doctor, Dr Onyema Ogbuagbu, has been identified as one of the key figures in the research that led pharmaceutical company, Pfizer, to develop the first effective COVID-19 vaccine.
Recall that Pfizer announced that data from its vaccine shows an efficient rate higher than 90%.
The breakthrough was announced on Monday, November 9, 2020, beating over 200 COVID-19 vaccines being developed around the world.
In an interview with ABC News on distribution of the vaccine, Onyema said although doses will be unavailable to everyone at first, massive distribution was expected to take off in the first quarter of 2021.
Concerning how Pfizer was able to reach that high level of efficacy and what that means for the process moving forward, Onyema said,
“I think those of us involved in the trials are really super excited by the results that were really quite unexpected… we quite expected that the vaccines should at least have more that 50% efficacy, which is what the FDA set as bar. But it’s just so heart warming that vaccines have been too effective, and it’s great because having a very effective vaccine would help us achieve the so called immunity which would mean that if we have enough people who receive the vaccine and are protected against the virus, this would really be the beginning of the end of the pandemic.
Obviously there are insufficient doses for everyone like has been mentioned already and we’re hoping that as we start to phase in, the vaccine and also to have more doses in the first quarte of 2021 that that might mean really, the pandemic ending.”
Ogbuagbu is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Infectious Disease Specialist at Yale School of Medicine. He graduated in 2003 from the University of Calabar with a Bachelor’s degree in Medicine.