The large COVID-19 vaccine tests set up in the UK are failing because the epidemic is slowing down. That is because you can’t test the effectiveness of a vaccine when the infection has stopped. Much like you can’t test a raincoat on a dry day. One needs a raging epidemic to test a vaccine. The epidemic may gain strengths again in a second wave from lack of caution or (say many, but I don’t know why because it’s not the flue:) in winter. That means that it may take half a year or longer before we’ll know if we have a working and safe vaccine, before we’ll know what doses different ages need, and before it could protect the world’s population.
Any six-year-old understands that you thus need to test the vaccine in countries where the epidemic just started or refuses to be tamed.
Not in many European countries where the epidemic is over (for now).
Not in Sweden or Belarus, which have unabated numbers of daily death, because suddenly, politicians may go for lock-down and stop the slaughter.
Not in countries like Iran, Turkey, and Russia, where truth is taken as an attack on the regime and the official count is reduced or totally made-up.
Not in countries like Bahrain and Kazakhstan, where the relation between the numbers of infected and deceased don’t reflect COVID-19.
Not in countries where there is a civil, guerilla, or international war because then it will be hard to conduct a health experiment.
Not in countries where the epidemic never really had a chance because of good prevention, like Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, New Zealand, Australia, Israel, Austria, Iceland.
And not in countries that still are problematic though the worst may have passed (for now; but many escape isolation too early), like the VS.
It must be tested, this week to begin still, in countries like: India, Chile, Indonesia, South Africa, Egypt, Argentina, etc. Plenty of choices!
There’s no time to lose. In 4-6 weeks, we’d know: Is there a vaccine?
And now we’re at it, why must the placebo group be as large as the other? Why can’t 67% or 75% get the real vaccine in a large double-blind trial? It isn’t that hard to multiply the results of the control groups by 2 or 3. Why?
When more people get the real stuff, we have a greater chance to find rare side-effects. Also, a large study is only done with stuff that seems safe. So, splitting the group in half, you withhold half of the participants from what you hope will be something beneficial. Instead of a third or a quarter.
My source of information is here. NB: The numbers may have been kept low by insufficient testing of the sick, political scheming, excluding home deaths. The mortality may be kept high by: not testing people feeling fine.
Disclaimer: I do not claim that all my characterizations of each country are undisputable or that any list of certain countries is comprehensive.
In an update, I removed Mexico from the list of countries that would be fit for holding such trials at a news report that it seriously underreports.