The agreement follows the emergency approval of the vaccine on Friday by the WHO: a prerequisite for the serum to be integrated into the Covax system.
The global Covax system will have 500 million doses of Moderna’s anti-Covid vaccine, after an agreement signed with the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi).
The first doses of this messenger RNA vaccine are expected to be delivered in the fourth quarter of 2021, “with a total of 34 million doses available in 2021 and up to 466 million doses in 2022Gavi said in a statement released Monday.
The Moderna vaccine is usually administered in two doses, although new recommendations call for a single dose if the patient has had Covid fairly recently. The agreement also contains “options for possibly obtaining vaccine doses that are suitable for future variants“, Said the Geneva-based organization.
Expansion and diversification of the portfolio
“Expanding and diversifying the portfolio has always been a key objective of Covax, and to remain flexible in the face of this ever-evolving pandemic – including the growing threat posed by new variantsSaid Gavi Executive Director Dr Seth Berkley. This agreement with Moderna “is one more step in this direction“, He assured. It follows the emergency approval of the vaccine on Friday by the World Health Organization (WHO), a prerequisite for the serum to be integrated into the Covax system, set up by Gavi, WHO and Cepi (Coalition for Innovations in Epidemic Preparedness).
The agreement is “an important step as we strive to ensure that people around the world have access to our Covid-19 vaccine“, Declared the boss of Moderna, Stéphane Bancel, acknowledging that”many countries have limited resources to access vaccines“. In addition to Moderna, the WHO has also approved the vaccine from Pfizer-BioNTech, the two AstraZeneca sera manufactured in India and South Korea, and the one from Johnson & Johnson, called Janssen.
49 million vaccines
To date, Covax, whose main supplier remains AstraZeneca, has shipped more than 49 million vaccines to 121 participating countries and territories. The system has come up against the will of the richest states, which in the face of popular pressure, have obtained as many doses as possible to the detriment of the others. The device is also undermined by the decision taken by India to block exports of doses produced by AZ via the Serum Institute of India (SII), the Asian giant itself being overwhelmed by the Covid epidemic.
Faced with this situation, the WHO called on countries with enough vaccines to share them with poor countries via Covax. Some countries have already made announcements. And Sweden in turn committed to doing “donation of one million doses of AZ / Oxford vaccine to help Covax urgently address short-term supply delays“Gavi said in the statement.