Pfizer apply to US regulator for Covid vaccine approval TODAY – and jabs could be rolled out in mid-DecemberNovember 20, 2020
PHARMACEUTICAL giant Pfizer has applied to the US regulator to push through its coronavirus vaccine for approval.
If the vaccine is approved in the US, it could be ready by mid-December offering hope Brits could get getting the jab in just a matter of weeks.
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Pfizer and BioNTech is seeking emergency approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
It's also seeking approval in Australia, Canada and Japan.
The UK has 20 million of the vaccines on order but it has not yet been approved by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
The vaccine was proven to be 95 per cent effective in stage 3 trials.
The announcement from Pfizer has been expected after its CEO said they had a "complete picture" of the virus.
Just yesterday Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said: "Filing in the US represents a critical milestone in our journey to deliver a Covid-19 vaccine to the world and we now have a more complete picture of both the efficacy and safety profile of our vaccine, giving us confidence in its potential.
"The companies will be ready to distribute the vaccine candidate within hours after authorisation".
European regulators are also expected to move quickly on the vaccine and European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said this could be as early as the second half of December.
The announcement comes after Health Secretary Matt Hancock today revealed that the UK is "weeks away" from a vaccine programme.
He's previously said that the vaccine programme will start at the beginning of December – if it gets the green safety light.
It will start with NHS staff, the vulnerable and the elderly, and make its way down through the age groups after that.
And it could mean people could get the flu jab and the coronavirus vaccine at the same time in the near future, he said.
He said the likely biggest rollout would take place in the New Year, but added: "We still hold out the hope we might get some going in December this year."
Firefighters will join a specially trained army of 40,000 extra workers recruited to roll out Pfizer jabs at record speed — with up to one million a day forecast.
NHS bosses will target retired doctors and nurses to help, as well as other workers with first-aid skills, such as firefighters, PCSOs and members of the Armed Forces.
Trainee medics and nurses, as well as other frontline health workers, will also be called upon under the radical new drive to beat the virus.
All will receive specialist training before delivering the Pfizer vaccine to Brits — supported by an additional 30,000-strong army of St John Ambulance volunteers.
Every major city will get a dedicated mass vaccination centre, with 50 initially planned in Nightingale hospitals, sports arenas and town halls.
A further 1,000 smaller Covid immunisation sites will be dotted across England.
NHS bosses want every GP practice to be able to deliver the coronavirus vaccine to patients in the long-term, according to details leaked to the Health Service Journal.
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