Tag Archives: VACCINE (UPDATE 1)

UPDATE 1-Italy is considering legal action to delay delivery of the Pfizer vaccine | Instant News


* Pfizer plans to cut further dosages to Italy

* Italy slows down the shot to ensure a second dose

* Rome must protect Italian citizens – commissioner (Adds comment from)

ROME, Jan 20 (Reuters) – Italy is considering legal action against Pfizer Inc after the US drugmaker announced further cuts in shipments of the coronavirus vaccine, said the country’s special COVID-19 commissioner Domenico Arcuri.

Pfizer has faced criticism across Europe for its surprise move to temporarily suspend vaccine deliveries to countries worried that disruption could mess up their inoculation campaigns.

The company told Italy last week that it was cutting its shipments by 29%. On Tuesday, it said it was not in a position to make up for next week’s 29% shortfall and planned “slight cuts” in deliveries, Arcuri said.

“As a result, we discussed what measures should be taken to protect Italians and their health in all civil and criminal places,” Arcuri said in a statement late Tuesday.

“It has been unanimously decided that this action will be taken starting in the coming days.”

He did not elaborate.

The Pfizer vaccine requires two injections, given about 21 days apart, to maintain the immune system well enough to fight the coronavirus.

Pfizer’s move has had a serious impact on vaccination plans drawn up by local authorities, said the governor of the northern region Emilia Romagna.

“Due to dose reductions, many regions have had to slow down or even suspend new vaccinations to ensure administration of a second dose to those who have received the first,” Stefano Bonaccini told Reuters by email.

A Pfizer spokesperson declined to comment on Wednesday on Italian legal threats and criticism of delivery delays beyond his statement on Friday about supply cuts.

The drugmaker said last week it was temporarily slowing down supplies of a coronavirus vaccine to Europe to make manufacturing changes that would boost production.

Pfizer, which is trying to deliver millions of doses at breakneck speed to curb a pandemic that has killed more than 2 million people worldwide, said the changes would “provide a significant dose increase by the end of February and March”.

According to Italian sources, Rome is now trying to assess whether Pfizer is acting under force, or circumstances beyond its control.

Otherwise, the drug group could be accused of violating the contracts it has signed with the European Union on behalf of the member countries, the source said.

One possibility is for Rome to ask the European Union to file a lawsuit with the court in the Belgian capital, Brussels, the source said.

“Local authorities will support the government in any necessary action, but I really hope this does not happen,” said Bonaccini.

Reporting by Emilio Parodi and Stephen Jewkes in Milan, Domenico Lusi in Rome; additional reporting by Josephine Mason in London; Written by Giselda Vagnoni; Edited by Nick Macfie

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UPDATE 1-More than 600,000 people in the UK receive their first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine | Instant News


(Added details of statement, vaccine related background)

December 24 (Reuters) – More than 600,000 people in the United Kingdom have received the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine since inoculation began in the country earlier this month, the UK government said on Thursday.

“The government today published figures showing the number of people who have received the vaccine between December 8 and December 20 in the UK is 616,933,” the Department of Health and Social Care said in a statement. bit.ly/3mNRZwH.

Earlier this month, the UK became the first country in the world to launch a vaccine made by Pfizer and BioNTech.

In all, the UK has ordered 40 million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine, and Health Secretary Matt Hancock said he expects to receive millions of doses by the end of this year.

Vaccines have been given to nursing home residents, those aged 80 and over and health and social care staff through more than 500 vaccination sites, the government said.

British drugmaker AstraZeneca Plc submitted a complete data package on the COVID-19 vaccine to British drug regulators, Hancock said on Wednesday.

Chief Executive Officer of the Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency June Raine told Reuters on Thursday that regulators were starting data analysis and would make decisions in the “shortest possible time.”

Separately, a Ministry of Health spokesman told Reuters that some staff at Milton Keynes’s testing laboratory, the largest in the UK, had tested positive for COVID-19.

The new variant of the coronavirus has spread rapidly in the UK recently with large parts of the UK being placed under the strictest COVID-19 restrictions.

The mutation known as the B.1.1.7 lineage may be up to 70% more contagious and more worrisome for children. It has sowed chaos in Britain, sparked a wave of travel bans that disrupted trade with Europe and threatened to further isolate the island nation.

Reporting by Radhika Anilkumar and Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Edited by Nick Macfie and Cynthia Osterman

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UPDATE 1-Germany to start the first COVID-19 vaccination in a nursing home on 27 December | Instant News


(Adding Spahn to vaccine doses)

BERLIN, December 21 (Reuters) – Germany will start its first coronavirus vaccination at a nursing home on December 27, Health Minister Jens Spahn said on Monday.

He welcomed the approval of the vaccines developed by Pfizer and BioNTech by the European Medicines Agency as an important milestone in the fight against the pandemic.

“Vaccinations paved the way for us to get out of the crisis. And we are doing everything we can to take this path as quickly as possible, “said Spahn.

The federal government plans to distribute more than 1.3 million doses of the vaccine to local health authorities in 16 German states by the end of this year, Spahn said.

“In January, at least 670,000 more doses of vaccine will be distributed every week,” he said.

This means about 4 million vaccine shots should be possible in Germany in the five weeks from 27 December to 31 January. (Reporting by Michael Nienaber, edited by Tom Sims and Giles Elgood)

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UPDATE 1-UK Vaccine Taskforce Chair says the initial COVID-19 vaccine may not be perfect – The Lancet | Instant News


(Adding details of the chair, background)

Oct 28 (Reuters) – UK Vaccine Task Force Chair Kate Bingham said on Tuesday that the first generation of COVID-19 vaccines are “likely imperfect” and that they “may not work for everyone”.

“However, we did not know that we would ever have a vaccine at all. It is important to guard against complacency and over-optimism,” wrote Bingham in an article published in the medical journal The Lancet. bit.ly/37LEWYA.

“First generation vaccines are likely to be imperfect, and we have to be prepared that they may not prevent infection but rather reduce symptoms, and, even then, may not work for everyone or for a long time,” he added.

Bingham wrote that the Vaccines Task Force acknowledged that “many, and possibly all, of these vaccines could fail”, adding the focus is on vaccines that are expected to elicit an immune response in populations over 65 years of age.

He said that global production capacity for vaccines was grossly inadequate for the billions of doses needed and that UK manufacturing capabilities were “equally scarce”.

Earlier on Tuesday, a study by scientists at Imperial College London found that antibodies to the new coronavirus decreased rapidly in the UK population over the summer, suggesting protection after infection may not last long and increasing the likelihood of decreased immunity in society.

The Telegraph newspaper reported that the British government is working on the assumption that the second wave of coronavirus will be more deadly than the first. (Reporting by Kanishka Singh; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Christopher Cushing)

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