The Abstract Podcast

Covid-19 vaccines reach new milestones, but the race is far from over

In this episode, we discuss the many hurdles that remain before vaccines will be available to the public.

As the race to distribute the first coronavirus vaccine heats up, two frontrunners — Pfizer and Moderna —have produced stunning results from their Phase 3 vaccine trials. Claiming to have vaccines that are over 90 percent effective, the companies have ignited new hope that we might finally be turning a corner after months of uncertainty.

However, there are many hurdles to overcome before the vaccines are available at your local doctor's office, or pharmacy. The FDA’s approval process could be a lengthy one, and new research reminds us that outbreaks can still happen, even if most people get vaccinated.

As a light flickers at the end of the tunnel, Covid-19 vaccines are closer to the finish line than ever — but the race is far from over.

In this episode of The Abstract, we discuss the many hurdles that remain before vaccines will be available to the public.

Our first story is about the promising results of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, which claim to be over 90 percent effective in preventing infection of Covid-19. While there are signs that we just might get the pandemic under control, both vaccines still have to jump several hurdles before everyone who needs one gets one.

Our second story is about how outbreaks can still happen despite the widespread use of vaccines. New research on a recent measles outbreak serves as a teachable moment for the present, revealing a key lesson about herd immunity in 2020.

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Right now, facts and science matter more than ever. That's part of the reason for The Abstract, this all-new podcast from the Inverse staff that focuses exclusively on science and innovation. Three new episodes are released a week, and each covers one theme via two related stories. Each features audio of original Inverse reporting, where the facts and context take center stage. It's hosted by the Tanya Bustos of WSJ Podcasts. Because we're Inverse, it's all true but slightly off-kilter. It's made for people who want to know the whole story. Nick Lucchesi, executive editor, Inverse

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