France will begin its Covid-19 vaccination campaign on Sunday, French Health Minister Olivier Véran announced on Twitter on Monday, as the European Medicines Agency authorized the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine in the EU.
“On Sunday, we will start vaccinating in France. The most vulnerable among us first, after medical examination, information and collection of consent. A smooth start, concerned about the safety of all and respectful of our ethical commitments,” tweeted Véran.
“We will be able to launch the vaccination campaign in France with European coordination at the end of this week,” government spokesman Gabriel Attal said shortly afterwards, on leaving the Council of Ministers.
France’s vaccination strategy plans for one million vaccinations in January in retirement homes for dependent elderly people, then will concern people at risk (depending on age and pathology factors).
Non-priority populations will not be vaccinated until late spring.
The European Medicines Agency, based in Amsterdam, said on Monday that it “supports a conditional marketing authorisation in the EU for the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech,” said EMEA Director-General Emer Cooke.
On Monday evening, European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen announced that the Commission had officially approved the vaccine for use, adding that it will be made available for all EU countries “at the same time, on the same conditions.”
Spain has already announced that it will start its vaccination campaign on 27 December.