Question to the Department of Health and Social Care:
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking in response to the risk that a COVID-19 vaccine may not be found in the coming months.
There is extraordinary effort taking place in the United Kingdom and internationally to accelerate the research and development of a vaccine as soon as possible, with the Government making over £130 million available to fund the front-runners University of Oxford and Imperial College London teams, on top of the £250 million we have pledged to the international effort to find a vaccine – the largest international contribution of any country.
Given that a COVID-19 vaccine may not be found, we are also working on identifying safe and effective treatments for COVID-19. There are multiple clinical trials underway, including the ACCORD phase II trial platform that identifies and tests newer therapeutics, and phase III trials including PRINCIPLE, RECOVERY and REMAP-CAP, that are trialling repurposed drugs in primary, acute and intensive care settings respectively.