US hoping for two Covid-19 vaccines by end of November
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Two American companies expect to apply for emergency approval for their Covid-19 vaccines by late November, welcome news as the US crossed eight million confirmed cases amid a third surge of its coronavirus epidemic.
Pfizer said Friday it hopes to move ahead with its vaccine after safety data is available in the third week of November, weeks after the November 3 presidential election.
The announcement means the United States could have two vaccines ready by the end of the year, with Massachusetts biotech firm Moderna aiming for November 25 to seek authorization.
“So let me be clear, assuming positive data, Pfizer will apply for Emergency Authorization Use in the US soon after the safety milestone is achieved in the third week of November,” the company’s chairman and CEO Albert Bourla said in an open letter. The news lifted the company’s shares two percent in the US.
But experts warn that even when vaccines are approved, it will take many months until they are widely available.
And unlike vaccines against other diseases such as measles, experts believe Covid-19 vaccines, when they come, will fall far short of being 100 percent effective. (AFP | Issam AHMED)