Pfizer coronavirus vaccine faces last hurdle before US decision - GulfToday

Pfizer coronavirus vaccine faces last hurdle before US decision


This photo shows the head office of the American multinational pharmaceutical corporation Pfizer in New York.

Gulf Today Report

Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine faces one final hurdle as two dozen independent experts convened by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will spend on Thursday debating the issue during a livestreamed public event, an exercise in transparency unmatched by any other regulatory agency.

At the end of the day Pfizer races to become the first shot greenlighted in the US: a panel of experts who will scrutinise the company’s data for any red flags.


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The members of the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) will hold a vote on whether or not to recommend that the FDA issues an emergency use authorisation (EUA).

Pfizer Covid-19 Vaccine
Image only for representation

Thursday’s meeting of the Food and Drug Administration’s vaccine advisory panel is likely the last step before a US decision to begin shipping millions of doses of the shot, which has shown strong protection against the coronavirus.

The FDA panel functions like a science court that will pick apart the data and debate — in public and live-streamed — whether the shot is safe and effective enough to be cleared for emergency use. The non-government experts specialize in vaccine development, infectious diseases and medical statistics. The FDA is expected to follow the committee’s advice, although it is not required to do so.

The FDA’s decision comes as the coronavirus continues surging across much of the world, claiming more than 1.5 million lives, including more than 289,000 in the US.

Hanging over the meeting is a warning from U.K. officials that people with a history of serious allergic reactions shouldn’t get the vaccine. Government officials there are investigating two reports of reactions that occurred when the country began mass vaccinations.

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