A woman holds a small bottle labeled with a "Coronavirus COVID-19 Vaccine" sticker and a medical syringe Image Credit: Reuters

For the past 10 months or so, the global community has been fighting the coronavirus pandemic, attempting to suppress its transmission, protecting people and trying to ensure that medical and hospital facilities could cope with the sheer volume of cases. At the same time, scientists and researchers the world over have embarked on an unprecedented effort to find effective vaccines that will counter coronavirus, inoculate as many as possible and restore as normality.

Our collective efforts are paying off — and we are entering the end stage of this pandemic now. The UAE’s Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) has announced the official registration of Beijing Institute of Biological Products’s COVID-19 vaccine in a major step towards combating the global pandemic. Sinopharm CNBG vaccine, MOHAP notes, is proven to have an 86 per cent efficacy against the virus. The vaccine is fully effective in preventing moderate and severe cases of the disease.

These vaccines, their effectiveness, the willingness of nations to work together with a common goal, have shown what we can achieve

- Gulf News

The global effort to fight this virus has meant that international collaboration, sharing of information, combining of efforts coupled with unprecedented funding to find effective vaccines, and the willingness of so many to offer up their arms in clinical trials has greatly compressed the timeline normally associated with finding an effective inoculation jab against a pandemic. Trials and testing phases have been carried out on a huge scale, allowing more people to be tested much quicker — with the results coming on an expedited scale.

On Tuesday in Coventry in the UK, a 90-year-old woman received the first approved vaccine. In the days, weeks and months to come, billions the world over will receive similar vaccines, with the Sinopharm CNBG joining the arsenal in curtailing this pandemic.

These have been very strange times indeed these past months. Worldwide death toll has been staggering, the sheer numbers of people infected at times has been overwhelming, and the economic costs will take years to recover. But we are prevailing. These vaccines, their effectiveness, the willingness of nations to work together with a common goal, have shown what we can achieve.

Slowly, surely, things are returning to the pre-Covid normality. In Abu Dhabi officials have announced that all economic, tourism, cultural and entertainment activities will soon resume. Infection rates are low, measures have worked, and rolling back the restrictions seems to be the next step in the right direction. Yes, there is light at the end of this long, dark tunnel.