Covid-19 vaccines should protect against new, more transmissible strain from UK: Gan Kim Yong

MOH will evaluate the data as it emerges and review Singapore’s vaccine strategy and border measures accordingly, said Mr Gan Kim Yong on Jan 4, 2021.
MOH will evaluate the data as it emerges and review Singapore’s vaccine strategy and border measures accordingly, said Mr Gan Kim Yong on Jan 4, 2021. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

SINGAPORE - There is currently no evidence that existing Covid-19 vaccines are less effective against the new, more transmissible strain of the coronavirus, said Health Minister Gan Kim Yong on Monday (Jan 4).

He noted that vaccine manufacturers Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna have publicly stated that their vaccines are likely to protect against the new strain, and are undertaking studies to formally confirm this.

The Health Ministry (MOH) will evaluate the data as it emerges and review Singapore's vaccine strategy and border measures accordingly, Mr Gan said.

The minister was responding to a parliamentary question from Mr Melvin Yong (Radin Mas), who had asked if there is any data to show that existing vaccines are effective against the new virus strain from the United Kingdom.

"Mutations occur in viruses naturally and different strains can emerge from time to time, especially in a long-drawn pandemic," Mr Gan said. "Experts have said that it is unlikely that these mutations would impact effectiveness of current vaccines."