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The United State’s FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has approved the Pfizer’s and BioNTech covid vaccine for EUA (Emergency Use Authorization) in what was seen as a turning point in the fight against the pandemic. The COVID-19 virus has already claimed almost 300,000 lives in the United States and caused turmoil across vast swaths of the U.S. economy.
FDA Chief Scientist Denise Hinton notified Pfizer in a letter last Friday that the company’s covid vaccine was being approved for emergency use.
President Trump tweeted about the news, calling the announcement a “medical miracle”, adding:
The Director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Dr. Peter Marks, said the administration’s decision “holds the promise to alter the course of this pandemic in the United States.”
“With science guiding our decision-making, the available safety and effectiveness data support the authorization of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine because the vaccine’s known and potential benefits clearly outweigh its known and potential risks,
Under President Trump’s vaccine program codenamed Operation Warp Speed, the government plans to deliver an initial 2.9 million doses of the vaccine, followed by a further 2.9 million doses 21 days later. The Pfizer-BioNTech calls for two doses of the medication over a three-week period.
Officials in the United States estimate it will take months to vaccinate everyone in the U.S. Pfizer’s initial delivery schedule calls for the delivery of 50 million doses by the end of the year, enough to administer to 25 million people, with essential health workers and vulnerable sections of the population being first in line.
While the vaccine hasn’t received full approval, the Emergency Use Authorization allows for the vaccine to be administered to people aged 16 and over.
Pfizer’s covid vaccine makes use of messenger RNA, or mRNA, technology. This is an entirely new approach to vaccine development that uses genetic material to induce an immune response.
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