In some more encouraging news in these really difficult times, the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine has now been authorised for use by the UK’s independent regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), following a thorough and vigorous assessment by the MHRA’s teams of scientists, including advice from the independent Commission on Human Medicines, which reviewed in depth all the data to ensure this vaccine meets the required standards of safety, quality and effectiveness. This again highlights the fantastic work our world-leading science and research sector continues to do in the fight against this terrible virus.
This followed the Prime Minister’s press conference yesterday, in which he said 1.5 million jabs had so far been administered to people in the UK and has set the target to deliver the first doses to 15 million of the most vulnerable in the Vaccination Priority List by 15th February.
The Health Secretary, Matt Hancock MP, said today this vaccine was “another weapon in our arsenal to tame this awful disease”, adding it will “boost our vaccination programme even further once doses become available from the spring”. This will help ease any potential delays in the administration programme.
Some quick points on the Moderna vaccine:
- This is now the third Covid-19 vaccine to be approved for use by the MHRA and has been approved for use in people 18 years and over.
- It is US based, and as such it is expected doses will be ready to be rolled out in March
- It can also be stored at –20C for up to 6 months, making it much easier to distribute than the Pfizer/AstraZeneca jab, which must be stored at –70C.
- It has shown to have a 94% efficacy against Covid-19 in final trials.
- 7 million doses had already been ordered by the UK Government
- Following this authorisation, the Government has ordered another 10 million doses to be rolled out at sites across the country.
- The jabs’ early usage in the USA and other countries who have approved the vaccine have been successful, with no significant issues raised in terms of safety.
The Chief Executive of the MHRA, Dr June Raine, said the following after this authorisation:
“Today’s approval brings more encouraging news to the public and the healthcare sector. Having a third COVID-19 vaccine approved for supply following a robust and thorough assessment of all the available data is an important goal to have achieved and I am proud that the agency has helped to make this a reality.
“The progress we are now making for vaccines on the regulatory front, whilst not cutting any corners, is helping in our global fight against this disease and ultimately helping to save lives. I want to echo that our goal is always to put the protection of the public first.
“Once in use, all COVID-19 vaccines are continually monitored by the MHRA. This ensures that the benefits in protecting people against COVID-19 continue to far outweigh any potential side-effects. Meantime, even if you have had a vaccine it is vital that everyone follows the national lockdown restrictions and remembers ‘stay alert, protect the NHS and save lives’ at all times.”
More information on the latest local vaccination effort can be found here: https://www.mimsdavies.org.uk/news/vaccine-roll-out-mid-sussex-latest-details