Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:31 pm on 9th March 2020.

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Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Secretary of State for Health and Social Care 3:31 pm, 9th March 2020

The critical point about vaccine development for coronavirus is that if we cannot be sure that a vaccine is safe, we cannot put it into large numbers of people for a disease with a mortality rate of around 1%. This is different from a disease like Ebola, where the mortality rate of around 70% is so high that it is worth taking the risk.

The broader point about the response to this virus is that it is very different from Ebola. It spreads in a different way and its mortality rate is very different, so it is very important that we fight this disease rather than fighting the last war.