World Health Organization lists Moderna for emergency use

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May 1 (UPI) — The Switzerland-based World Health Organization has listed the two-dose Moderna vaccine for emergency use.

The mRNA vaccine is the fifth vaccine to receive emergency validation from the U.N. body. It already gave approval to two from Oxford/AstraZeneca and one each from Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer/BioNTech.

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The Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech and Johnson & Johnson have all also received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The WHO’s approval on Friday makes the vaccines available for the COVAX supply, an initiative to make vaccine supplies available worldwide. It also allows countries to speed up their own regulatory approval of vaccines.

The WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization evaluated the Moderna vaccine in January and gave its approval for everyone 18 years old and older.

Moderna released the results of a study last month indicating its COVID-19 vaccine protects recipients from the virus for up to six months with a 90% efficacy rate after the second dose. The Massachusetts-based biotech company said the vaccine also was more than 95% effective against severe cases of the disease after six months.

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January 31, 2020

National Institutes of Health official Dr. Anthony Fauci (C) speaks about the coronavirus during a press briefing at the White House in Washington, D.C. Health and Human Services Secretary Alexander Azar (L) announced that the United States is declaring the virus a public health emergency and issued a federal quarantine order of 14 days for 195 Americans. Photo by Leigh Vogel/UPI | License Photo