(Geneva) The World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday issued an emergency authorization for the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, the fifth to receive approval from the UN health agency.
The RNA messenger vaccine “joins a growing list of vaccines approved by WHO for use in emergencies,” she said in a statement.
WHO has already approved a vaccine from Pfizer-BioNTech, two AstraZeneca sera made in India and South Korea, and a vaccine from Johnson & Johnson called Janssen. Soon, probably next week, a decision is expected on two Chinese vaccines, Sinopharm and Sinovac.
This process helps countries that do not have the means to independently determine drug efficacy and safety, gain faster access to therapy, and enable the Covax system created by WHO and partners (Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization – Gavi and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation) for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, particularly in disadvantaged countries, to be able to consider obtaining additional vaccines.
According to the press release, “WHO approval under the Emergency Procedure (EUL) is a precondition for the delivery of vaccines to a Covax facility.”
This approval of the Moderna vaccine came just in time for the Covax platform, which currently lacks the AstraZeneca vaccine produced by the Serum Institute of India (SII), India has blocked exports so the doses can be used to vaccinate the population. …
From 18 years old
The product, developed by the young company Moderna, a pioneer in COVID-19 vaccines, has characteristics very similar to that developed by Pfizer-BioNTech, with an efficiency rate of 94.1% according to WHO. This American vaccine is licensed in the EU, North America, the UK, and some other countries like Israel and Singapore.
On January 21, it was already reviewed by the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on Immunization, which is responsible for recommending vaccines, whether or not they have been licensed by WHO.
He recommends using the vaccine for all age groups from 18 years old. WHO experts also advise the introduction of two doses of Modern vaccine with an interval of 28 days, but they believe that this is 2e the injection can be “delayed 42 days” – or six weeks – in exceptional circumstances, due to the high prevalence of the disease in the country and the lack of vaccines.
However, they do not recommend cutting the dose in half.
The announcement of its emergency WHO approval comes the day following Moderna’s announcement of its manufacturing capacity.
Because if both vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna are based on innovative technology, messenger RNA, the two laboratories have one element: the number of vaccines distributed. Admittedly, Moderna is a mainstay of COVID-19 vaccination in the United States, their home country, but lags far behind in the European countryside, which is largely dominated by Pfizer / BioNtech.
Moderna said Thursday that it intends to accelerate the pace and expects to “increase its global production capacity to three billion doses in 2022,” roughly double what was previously expected.
The company will invest in its European subcontractors, Switzerland’s Lonza, which makes the active ingredient – the substance that makes the vaccine work – and Spain’s Rovi, which conditions the vaccine.