(Reuters) - Here's what you need to know about the coronavirus right now:
China inoculates before vaccine trials completed
China is inoculating tens of thousands of its citizens with experimental coronavirus vaccines and attracting international interest in their development, despite expert concerns over the safety of drugs that have not completed standard testing.
Aiming to protect essential workers and reduce the likelihood of a resurgence, the vaccines are also grabbing attention in the global scramble by governments to secure supplies, potentially helping reframe China's perceived role in the pandemic.
China's approach runs counter to that of many Western countries, where experts have warned against authorising the emergency use of vaccines that have not completed testing, citing a lack of understanding about longer-term efficacy and potential side effects.
Trump says vaccine weeks away
U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday said a vaccine against the deadly coronavirus could be three or four weeks away, despite caution from some U.S. public health officials about that accelerated timeline.
Trump, speaking at a town hall hosted by ABC News in Philadelphia, defended his handling of the coronavirus crisis, and said a vaccine could be ready for distribution before the U.S. presidential election on Nov. 3.
Trump also provoked mockery on Twitter when he spoke about "herd mentality" instead of "herd immunity," a form of indirect protection from infectious disease that occurs when enough people have become immune through vaccination or previous infections.
Australia on track to relax extended hard lockdown
Australia's Victoria state on Wednesday said the daily rise in infections in its coronavirus hot spot of Melbourne has eased further, putting it on course to relax an extended hard lockdown in the city by the end of the month.
Construction sites, manufacturing plants, warehouses and childcare facilities can reopen, allowing more than 100,000 workers to return to their jobs, if the 14-day rolling average is under 50 cases as of Sept. 28.
From late Wednesday, in regional Victoria, outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people will be permitted, residents of a household will be allowed to visit one other home, and cafes will be able to seat up to 50 people outdoors.
Pfizer vaccine study shows mild-to-moderate side effects
Pfizer Inc said on Tuesday participants were showing mostly mild-to-moderate side effects when given either the company's experimental coronavirus vaccine or a placebo in an ongoing late-stage study.
The company said in a presentation to investors that side effects included fatigue, headache, chills and muscle pain. Some participants in the trial also developed fevers - including a few high fevers. The data is blinded, meaning Pfizer does not know which patients received the vaccine or a placebo.
Pfizer expects it will have results on whether the vaccine works in October.
(Compiled by Karishma Singh; Editing by Sam Holmes)