In the final episode of this podcast series our host, Associate Professor Nigel Crawford, speaks with Professor Walter Orenstein. Dr Orenstein is a Professor of Medicine, Epidemiology, Global Health and Paediatrics at Emory University; Associate Director of the Emory Vaccine Center and the Director of Emory Vaccine Policy and Development. An expert in vaccinology, Dr Orenstein has worked at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Director of the United States Immunisation Program and is a current member of several WHO groups. Further to this he is the co-editor of the vaccine textbook, Plotkin’s Vaccines, 7वां edition. In this episode they discuss:

  • Lessons that can be learnt from Plotkin’s Vaccines in the setting of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and development of vaccines
  • Recent press releases showing promising early results from two mRNA COVID-19 vaccine candidates developed by Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna
  • The critical role of ongoing monitoring for safety and effectiveness of vaccines once they are in use
  • The likely highest priority groups when vaccines do become available
  • The role of children in SARS-CoV-2 transmission and whether or not they need to be vaccinated
  • The importance of a correlate of protection in SARS-CoV-2 vaccines
  • The need to monitor for vaccine associated enhanced disease (VAED)
  • The importance of immunisation providers supporting reports of adverse events following immunisation (AEFI)
  • The importance of communication in supporting vaccine acceptance and uptake
  • Key next steps on the road to a COVID-19 vaccine: a better understanding of how many doses are required and when, a prioritisation process so the vaccines can be used most effectively (with a clear allocation system); and communicating to the public that social distancing and wearing a mask will be ongoing for some time as a level of normality won’t be reached immediately, even with the exciting new efficacious COVID-19 vaccines


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