A committee of experts at the Federal Medicines Agency (FAMHP) has been created to advise the Belgian government on the purchase of vaccines against coronavirus, Le Soir reports.
The committee brings together scientific experts, AFPMS representatives, the Federal Public Health service and the three Belgian regions.
The group met for the first time on Tuesday with the aim of defining a list of selection criteria. It will then examine the files one after the other against these criteria and give a recommendation to the government.
The first file to examine has already arrived; a vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford – one of five promising options currently in clinical trials.
Belgium is already preparing now as part of the EU pre-order process strategy with the pharmaceutical industry laid out on 17 June. The idea is to be able to supply member states with enough doses as soon as the vaccines will pass the European Medicines Agency’s approval.
By speaking with one voice, Europe can make use of the size of its market – 27 countries – to negotiate with the pharmaceutical industry and get the lowest possible price.
Belgium is unlikely to choose a single vaccine, Le Soir says, but rather a group of vaccines. It would be risky to put all your eggs in the same basket, FAMHP argues.