The United States government will begin donating doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine once it is approved by the relevant health entities in the country, The Associated Press reported Monday.
It is expected to deliver up to 60 million doses, which are not used there, “over the next few months.” The Joe Biden administration has secured the supply of hundreds of million doses of the inoculants from Pfizer / BioNtech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson. And unlike the one developed by the Anglo-Swedish laboratory, they have already been authorized and are being administered in the territory.
“Given the robust portfolio of vaccines that the United States has that have been cleared by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), and given that AstraZeneca’s vaccine has not been licensed for use in the United States, United, we do not need to use AtraZeneca vaccines here for the next several months, ”said White House COVID-19 Pandemic Coordinator Jeff Zients. “Accordingly, the United States is looking at options to share AstraZeneca doses with other countries as they become available,” he added.
The official explained that around 10 million doses of the AstraZeneca inoculant have been produced in the country, but its “quality” has yet to be evaluated by the FDA, something that could happen in the coming weeks. Another 50 million doses are in different production processes and, if they also receive authorization from the health entity, they could be distributed in May and June.
The announcement comes a day after Democratic congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi asked Biden that surplus vaccines be distributed to countries where the coronavirus is hitting the hardest, “including India, Argentina and others.”
Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi. Photo: Samuel Corum / Pool via REUTERS
Krishnamoorthi, who was born in New Delhi and moved to the United States with his parents at three months of age, plays a leading role in the fight against Coronavirus within Congress.
Since January, he is one of 12 members of the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis in Congress, along with six other Democratic and five Republican representatives. Precisely, throughout the almost a year and a half of the covid-19 pandemic in the world, the representative of Illinois played a leading role in sponsoring and developing key policies to address the pandemic.
“To stop the spread of this virus internationally and protect public health and our international economy, we need to distribute these vaccines right now,” says the statement from the US legislator, who to support his request made reference to the fact that in March the country has already donated around 4 million doses to Mexico and Canada.
These two countries have asked the Biden government to send new doses, while numerous others have made similar requests. The United States has a contract for the supply of 300 million doses of the vaccine developed by the Anglo-Swedish laboratory.
File photo of US President Joe Biden speaking at the White House. Jan 25, 2021. REUTERS / Kevin Lamarque /
In contrast to the abundance of vaccines that take place in the United States, this Monday the European Commission presented a complaint precisely to AstraZeneca, understanding that it has not respected the terms of the vaccine contract signed with the Community Executive for the whole of the Union European (EU).
“Our priority is to ensure that COVID-19 vaccine deliveries occur to protect the health of the EU. For this reason, the Commission has decided, together with the Member States, to initiate legal proceedings against Astrazeneca. Every dose of vaccine counts. Every dose saves lives, ”said Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides on Twitter.
The Community Executive had made it known that it was consulting with the member states its intention to prosecute the dispute with AstraZeneca, which delivered only 29.8 million vaccines in the first quarter and plans to deliver only 70 million more in the second compared to 300 million of promised doses. “Last Friday, the Commission initiated legal actions against the AstraZeneca company, based on the breach of the advance purchase agreement,” said the spokesman for Health of the EC, Stefan de Keersmaecker, at a press conference.
For its part, the laboratory responded that it “has fully complied with” the agreement for the sale of vaccines against COVID-19 with the European Commission and that therefore it will “defend itself strongly” in court.