WHO approves Sinovac COVID-19 Vaccine for emergency use

*The World Health Organisation June 1 approves the Sinovac COVID-19 Vaccine for emergency use as the second Chinese jab to receive the global health endorsement

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

As an addition to other available Coronavirus vaccines, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has approved the Sinovac COVID-19 Vaccine for emergency use.

ConsumerConnect reports the Sinovac COVID-19 Vaccine as the second Chinese jab to receive the UN health body’s greenlight in recent times.

The global health agency Tuesday, June 1, 2021, signed off on the two-dose vaccine, which is already being deployed in several countries around the world, agency report stated.

The regulatory agency in a statement said: “WHO today (Tuesday) validated the Sinovac-CoronaVac COVID-19 Vaccine for emergency use.”

According to WHO, the move gives countries, funders, procuring agencies and communities “assurance that it meets international standards for safety, efficacy and manufacturing.”

Sinopharm became the first Chinese vaccine that the body approved May 2021.

Hitherto, the organisation has also given emergency use listing to vaccines being made by Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, and AstraZeneca shots being produced in India, South Korea and European Union (EU), which it counts separately.

In regard to the latest endorsement of the vaccine for emergency use, observers have said WHO’s listing of Sinovac COVID-19 Vaccine paves the way for countries worldwide to quickly approve and import a vaccine for distribution, especially those states without an international-standard regulator of their own.

It is also supposed that it opens the door for the jabs to enter the COVAX global vaccine-sharing scheme, which aims to provide equitable access to doses around the world, mainly in the developing countries and poorer countries.

Currently, only AstraZeneca and some Pfizer jabs are flowing through the COVAX scheme.

Mariangela Simao, WHO’s Assistant Director-General for Access to Health Products, said: “The world desperately needs multiple Covid-19 vaccines to address the huge access inequity across the globe.

“We urge manufacturers to participate in the COVAX facility, share their know-how and data, and contribute to bringing the pandemic under control.”

The Sinovac jab is already in use in 22 territories around the world, according to an AFP count.

Besides China, the countries using Sinovac also include Chile, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Thailand and Turkey.

The WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunisation have reviewed the jab and published their advice on its usage.

The agency noted: “WHO recommends the vaccine for use in adults 18 years and older, in a two-dose schedule with a spacing of two to four weeks.

“Vaccine efficacy results showed that the vaccine prevented symptomatic disease in 51 percent of those vaccinated and prevented severe COVID-19 and hospitalisation in 100 percent of the studied population.”

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