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Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine has been designated as an emergency use vaccine by the World Health Organization, making it the fifth to receive the designation.

Because of supply issues for other shots in the global COVAX vaccine exchange scheme, the WHO said it was important to have more vaccines available.

Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine
Image Source: The Strait Times

“The objective is to make medicines, vaccines and diagnostics available as rapidly as possible to address the emergency,” the WHO said in a statement.

India, one of the main suppliers of vaccines for the COVAX program, has restricted exports because of its crisis of infections.

Moderna’s inclusion on the list is unsurprising; the WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization recommended it for all adults in January (SAGE).

According to the WHO, the Moderna vaccine protects against COVID-19 with a 92 percent efficacy beginning 14 days after the first dose.

Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine
Image Source: BBC

Moderna revealed on Thursday that it would expand its production network to reach a capacity of up to 3 billion doses by 2022.

In the final hours of 2020, Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech’s vaccine, which also uses mRNA technology like Moderna’s, was the first to receive a WHO emergency use listing.

Since then, vaccines from Astrazeneca-SK Bio, Serum Institute of India, and Johnson & Johnson have been added to the list by the WHO.

Following an extensive analysis, the WHO is still considering Sinopharm and Sinovac’s COVID-19 vaccines, with decisions expected by the end of next week.

Source: ABC World News

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