European Commission authorizes new Covid vaccines after EMA clearance
The European Commission has authorized two Covid-19 vaccines adapted to provide protection against the Omicron variant currently dominant in Europe, Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides tweeted on Friday (Sep 2).
The announcement came a day after the European Medicines Agency (EMA) gave the green light for the vaccines produced by BioNTech/Pfizer and Moderna.
The commission had taken the decision to licence the vaccines a few hours after the EMA had cleared them, Kyriakides said.
She tweeted on Friday: "More authorizations should be coming soon, starting the rollout in our member states vaccination campaigns.”
In its statement on Thursday, the Amsterdam-based EMA said: "These vaccines are adapted versions of the original vaccines Comirnaty (Pfizer/BioNTech) and Spikevax (Moderna) to target the Omicron BA.1 subvariant in addition to the original strain of SARS-CoV-2."
While the BA.1 subvariant is declining in Germany, authorities believe that the new vaccine will also offer better protection against the BA.5 subvariant that is currently dominant.