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Vaccines: EU could approve Oxford/AstraZeneca by end of January, UK gives green light to Moderna

The UK today approved its third Covid-19 vaccine.

Image: Shutterstock/PhotobyTawat

THE EU’S DRUG regulator said that a decision to authorise the use of the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine could be reached by the end of this month.  

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) said it expects AstraZeneca to submit a conditional marketing application for its Covid-19 vaccine next week.

“Possible conclusion – end of Jan, depending on data and evaluation progress,” the EMA said on Twitter. 

A conditional marketing authorisation results in one authorisation valid throughout all EU member states. 

The UK has today approved its third Covid-19 vaccine with the Moderna vaccine which was also given the green light in the EU earlier this week. 

In the UK, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) approved the Moderna vaccine today.

But unlike the previous jabs, the Moderna vaccine will not be available for use straight away, with the first doses not expected to arrive until the spring.

The MHRA accepted the recommendation of the Commission on Human Medicines and authorised the Moderna vaccine following months of rigorous clinical trials.

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The vaccine is 94% effective in preventing disease, including in the elderly.

Minster for Health Stephen Donnelly said on Wednesday that Ireland has ordered 875,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine and that “the logistics are being finalised”. 

Earlier today, the EU struck a deal to double its supply of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to a total of 600 million doses. 

- With reporting by Press Association

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