US Experts’ Panel Gives Nod To Emergency Use of Pfizer Vaccine
Washington, US: A panel of experts advising the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday recommended emergency approval for the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.
The FDA’s vaccine advisory panel has independent scientific experts, infectious disease doctors and statisticians.
The final voting tally was 17 to 4, with one member, in favor of emergency authorization for people aged 16 years or older, reported The New York Times.
The agency is expected to authorize the vaccine within days, prioritizing health care workers and nursing home residents for receiving the first shots of the vaccine early next year.
The New York Times reported that with this approval, the US may finally begin to slow the spread of the virus just as infections and deaths surge. The US reported a record of more than 3,000 daily deaths on Wednesday.
The FDA is expected to grant an emergency use authorization on Saturday, according to familiar with the agency’s planning, though they cautioned that last-minute legal or bureaucratic requirements could push the announcement to Sunday or later.
The Pfizer vaccine has been approved for the public in the UK, Canada, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.
The US authorization of Pfizer’s vaccine is expected to be followed soon by one for Moderna’s version, which uses similar technology and has also shown promising results in clinical trials.