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Sinovac’s COVID-19 vaccine receives WHO emergency use listing

Vaccine found to be 51% effective in preventing symptomatic disease, meeting the WHO's recommendation of at least 50% efficacy

China’s Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine has received an emergency use listing (EUL) from the World Health Organization (WHO), paving the way for global access to the jab.

The WHO has listed Sinovac’s CoronaVac vaccine for emergency use in adults aged 18 years and older as part of a two-dose regimen. In a statement, the WHO said the decision gives the green light for the jab to be rolled out globally.

The Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine is the second vaccine developed in China to receive an EUL from the WHO, after Chinese state-owned Sinopharm secured an EUL for its inactivated COVID-19 jab last month.

A WHO EUL is designed to enable potential vaccines to become available globally at a faster rate, by expediting access to products in many countries across the globe.

It is also a prerequisite to supplying vaccines to the international vaccines-sharing facility COVAX.

“The world desperately needs multiple COVID-19 vaccines to address the huge access inequity across the globe,” said Mariângela Simão, WHO assistant-director general for access to health products.

“We urge manufacturers to participate in the COVAX Facility, share their knowhow and data and contribute to bringing the pandemic under control,” she added.

In clinical trials, the Sinovac vaccine was found to be 51% effective in preventing symptomatic disease, meeting the WHO's recommendation of at least 50% efficacy.

The vaccine was also found to be 100% effective at preventing severe COVID-19 and hospitalisation in the studied population.

Even though the clinical trials of CoronaVac enrolled few older adults aged over 60, the WHO said subsequent data collected in multiple countries and supportive immunogenicity data support its use in older individuals.

“There is no reason to believe that the vaccine has a different safety profile in older and younger populations. The WHO recommends that countries using the vaccine in older age groups conduct safety and effectiveness monitoring to verify the expected impact and contribute to making the recommendation more robust for all countries,” the WHO said in a statement.

According to the BBC, China has already produced ten million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to supply to the COVAX facility, with the aim of manufacturing three billion doses by the end of the year for the vaccines-sharing facility.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

2nd June 2021

From: Regulatory

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