EU countries want to purchase 180 million doses of customized vaccine
The flag of the European Union. pixabay.com
BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) – In view of the worrying Omikron variant, the EU states want 180 million doses of the adapted corona vaccine from Biontech / Pfizer to be delivered. An existing contract provides that the companies – if desired – adapt the vaccines to new variants within 100 days, said EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen on Friday night after an EU summit in Brussels. According to her, the EU states are now using this option. In total, the contract with Biontech / Pfizer provides for the delivery of up to 1.8 billion vaccine doses by the end of 2023.
“We know that the Omikron variant really threatens us,” said von der Leyen. It is spreading at an extremely fast rate and there may be a risk that it will at least partially bypass vaccination protection. The health systems are already overloaded. This is due to the high number of unvaccinated people. The answer to this could only be to expand vaccination, to vaccinate children from the age of five, to give booster vaccinations and to follow protective measures.
Von der Leyen also announced that her authority would promptly present guidelines with a view to the EU vaccination certificate. It is about a common approach when dealing with booster vaccinations and the question of how long the certificate is valid. Booster vaccinations are therefore recommended no later than six months after the full vaccination. The vaccination certificate should be valid for three more months before a refresher is necessary./mjm/DP/zb
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