By Sarah Rainsford
BBC News, Moscow

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  • Coronavirus pandemic

image copyrightGetty Imagesimage captionSputnik V is the country's leading vaccine against Covid-19

Its name alone speaks of Russia's ambition: Sputnik V, the country's leading vaccine against Covid-19, is meant to be a world-beater just like its cosmic namesake.

Back in August, it was the first to be registered for emergency use although it had only been tested on a few dozen people.

Now doctors, teachers and social workers are being offered Sputnik V in a mass inoculation campaign ordered by President Vladimir Putin. Its timing, just ahead of a similar launch in the UK, is unlikely to be a coincidence.

But Sputnik V is still in the midst of trials to check that it's safe and actually works, making some Russians wary of receiving it yet.

And despite a fanfare over the vaccine's grand rollout, there are still problems scaling-up production.