U.K. Clears Pfizer-BioNTech Covid Vaccine Ahead of U.S., EU
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The U.K. became the first western country to approve a Covid-19 vaccine, with its regulator clearingPfizer Inc. andBioNTech SE’s shot ahead of decisions in the U.S. and European Union.
The emergency authorization clears the way for the deployment of a vaccine that’s expected to play a significant role in the global effort to halt the coronavirus. Pfizer and its German partner saidin November that the shot, relying on novel technology called messenger RNA, was 95% effective in a final analysis of clinical-trial data.
The vaccine will be available in Britain from next week, according to a government statement. The U.K. regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, said on Wednesday that the vaccine “met its strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness.”
The U.K. had signaled it would move swiftly in approving a vaccine to protect its population, and doctors across the country were put on standby for a possible rollout. For the government, it’s anopportunity to make up for missteps during the pandemic as Britain’s death toll nears 60,000.
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