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Hungarians Optimistic About the Prospects of a Vaccine

Róbert Panyi 2020.08.11.

The majority of Hungarians trusts that a vaccine against the coronavirus is going to be developed in the near future, and 55% of those asked by the Association of Innovative Pharmaceutical Manufacturers (AIPM) would get vaccinated as soon as it arrives. The national representative survey of the AIPM found that trust in innovative medicines and vaccines is particularly high in Hungary.

According to the recent national survey of the AIPM, 50% of Hungarians believe that an effective coronavirus vaccine is going to be available in one year’s time. The survey also revealed that a significant minority (32%) are even more optimistic: they believe that the vaccine is likely to arrive in less than a year. 16% maintain that the world may need to wait two years at least. Meanwhile, only 2% think that the successful development of a vaccine is impossible.

Hungary to Reserve 5 Million Coronavirus Vaccines
Hungary to Reserve 5 Million Coronavirus Vaccines

Hungary has reserved nearly 5 million doses of potential future coronavirus vaccine, said PMO Head Gergely Gulyás at yesterday’s weekly government press conference. He added, however, that it is still uncertain when the vaccine will be available.  In practice, this means that although there is no antidote yet against the novel coronavirus, 5 million doses […]Continue reading

While it is apparent that Hungarians mostly agree on the prospects of the development of a coronavirus vaccine, they differ on their willingness to vaccinate themselves upon the arrival of the preventive cure. Nevertheless, a 55% majority answered that they would vaccinate themselves when possible.

Coronavirus Vaccine Under Development

There is reason for the hope of the Hungarians surveyed. A coronavirus vaccine under development by the University of Oxford has proven to be safe and has triggered an immune response in those receiving it.

In a trial involving 1,077 people, the vaccine in question managed to trigger an immune response, resulting in the patients making antibodies and T-cells that are capable of fighting the coronavirus. Although the findings are hugely promising, it is still early to judge whether this vaccine is safe and effective enough to enter mass production. Nevertheless, the UK has already ordered 100 million doses of the vaccine in question; and the vaccine has been labeled as the “most promising candidate” according to the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers.

Meanwhile, Hungary has reserved nearly 5 million doses of a potential future coronavirus vaccine; though it has not been announced which exact vaccine it is.

Vaccines in Hungary

It is not surprising that 55% of Hungarians would get vaccinated as soon as the medicine arrives, as the country is one of the world leaders in terms of compulsory vaccines, according to the AIPM. In Hungary, every child gets vaccinated against 12 different infectious diseases which has resulted in Hungary being one of the highest-ranking nations when it comes to general rates of vaccination.

According to Dr. Péter Holchacker, due to Hungary’s strict system of vaccines, the country has ranked higher than many Western European countries in terms of the threat posed by measles, mumps, whooping cough, and rubella. Asked about non-compulsory vaccination, 64% of those interviewed said they had never received any kind of non-compulsory vaccines.

Of those that have received such vaccinations, 29% said it was against the flu, 9% received it against tick-borne encephalitis, and 4% against meningitis. Some 44% said they had the vaccination administered each year and 5% said they had it more frequently. A total of 33% get non-compulsory vaccinations less frequently than every five years, 12% get it every two years, and 7% every five years, AIPM reported.

Although these statistics are promising, AIPM said that further improvements with regards to non-compulsory vaccines would benefit Hungary.

Featured photo: Attila Balázs/MTI