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EU to speed up authorisation of vaccines against variants

The European Union will speed up the procedure for authorising improved vaccines against new variants of the Coronavirus, European Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides said in an interview published on Sunday by the German newspaper, Augsburger Allgemeine.

“We have analysed the procedure with the European Medicines Agency and we have now decided that a vaccine that has been improved by the manufacturer on the basis of the previous vaccine to combat new mutations no longer has to go through the entire approval process,” Mrs. Kyriakides said.

“So it will be faster to have suitable vaccines available without compromising on safety,” she added.

The European Commission has come in for severe criticism from member states over delays in vaccine deliveries that have caused the EU to lag behind countries such as Britain and the United States. It has also come in for flak on the issue of vaccine orders.

While admitting that she was not “satisfied” by the current situation, the Health Commissioner came out against the criticisms.

“It’s wrong to claim that we’ve only made mistakes,” she said, pointing to the fact that the EU had secured the supply of 700 million doses of vaccines by the end of the third quarter.

The Brussels Times