Russia says it is planning to start mass COVID-19 vaccinations by October.
The country's health minister said a state research facility has finished clinical trails of a vaccine. Now it's on its way to be registered by mid-August, which is the most important step before a vaccine can be administered.
If it's registered, teachers and health care workers would get the coronavirus vaccine first.
Russia has shortened trials and sped up clinical evaluations. This has put it ahead of its Western peers in the race for developing a vaccine.
But there are some concerns about Russia's fast-tracked approach. The leading infectious disease expert in the U.S., Dr. Anthony Fauci, questioned it and said the U.S. would not depend on other countries for a vaccine.
"I do hope that the Chinese and the Russians are actually testing the vaccine before administering it to anyone. Because claims of having a vaccine ready to distribute before you do testing, I think is problematic."
The head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund said all necessary measures have been taken to ensure the coronavirus vaccine is safe and that clinical data would be available to the public in August. The World Health Organization declined to comment when asked if it had seen any data pointing to efficacy of the Russian vaccines.
More than 100 possible vaccinations for COVID-19 are being developed around the world, and there are 20 currently in clinical trials. At least four are in the final phase, which is human trials.