US FDA greenlights Moderna vaccine for emergency use

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted an emergency use authorization for the COVID-19 vaccine produced by Moderna on Friday, marking the second vaccine to receive FDA approval.

The FDA approval comes after a panel of outside experts voted 20 to 0, with one abstention, to endorse the vaccine for use in people 18 years and older on Thursday.

Officials from the US Department of Defense, which is helping to coordinate the vaccination campaign, had said that once the Moderna vaccine was authorized, 5.9 million doses could be shipped by next week.

“With the availability of two vaccines now for the prevention of COVID-19, the FDA has taken another crucial step in the fight against this global pandemic that is causing vast numbers of hospitalizations and deaths in the United States each day,” FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn said in a statement.

The US has already purchased 200 million doses of the Moderna vaccine – enough to inoculate 100 million people – with the expectation that the vaccine would receive emergency authorization.

The FDA approval comes after a similar vaccine produced by Pfizer and BioNTech received emergency authorization, starting a mass inoculation campaign and bringing a glimmer of hope to a country that has seen over 310,000 people killed by the virus.

The Moderna vaccine was found to be over 94 per cent effective in a clinical trial, similar to the Pfizer vaccine.

US leaders are starting to get vaccinated after the FDA approved the Pfizer vaccine last week. President-elect Joe Biden will receive his first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine next week, as Vice President Mike Pence and US Congressional leaders began receiving their shots on Friday.

Biden and his wife Jill will roll up their sleeves for a jab on Monday in Delaware for all to see in order “to send a clear message to the public that it’s safe,” his spokesperson Jen Psaki said.

Vice president-elect Kamala Harris and her husband will receive it after Christmas due to security and medical protocols, Psaki added.

Outgoing Vice President Mike Pence and his wife Karen Pence were both vaccinated at a building near the White House on live television on Friday morning.

“The American people can be confident. We have one, and perhaps within hours two, safe vaccines,” Pence said during the broadcast.

“I didn’t feel a thing. Well done,” he also remarked after receiving the shot.

Meanwhile, the White House has said that President Donald Trump, who was hospitalized with COVID-19 in October, would get vaccinated when his medical doctors deem it is necessary.

The country’s top infectious disease specialist, Anthony Fauci, has urged President Donald Trump, Pence, Biden, and Harris to all get vaccinated as quickly as possible for security reasons.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, also received the vaccination on Friday.

“Vaccines are how we beat this virus,” McConnell wrote in a tweet.

“Now back to continue fighting for a rescue package including a lot more money for distribution so more Americans can receive it as fast as possible.”

Source: GNA

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.