UK approves use of Moderna coronavirus vaccine and orders 10 million more doses

The Moderna vaccine has become the latest coronavirus jab to be authorised for use in the UK.

It is the third vaccine to be approved in the UK, joining those made by Pfizer and AstraZeneca.

The Government has also agreed to purchase an additional 10 million doses of the Moderna vaccine on top of its previous order of seven million, taking the total to 17 million.

However, supplies are not expected to be delivered until the spring.

The Moderna vaccine was about 94% effective at preventing illness in clinical trials, which found no serious safety issues.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “This is further great news and another weapon in our arsenal to tame this awful disease.

“We have already vaccinated nearly 1.5 million people across the UK and Moderna’s vaccine will allow us to accelerate our vaccination programme even further once doses become available from the spring.

“While we immunise those most at risk from Covid, I urge everyone to continue following the rules to keep cases low to protect our loved ones.”

The Moderna vaccine meets the UK medicines regulator’s strict standards of safety, efficacy and quality, a statement said on Friday.

“The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has accepted the recommendation of the Commission on Human Medicines and authorised the Moderna vaccine following months of rigorous clinical trials involving tens of thousands of people and an extensive analysis of the vaccine’s safety, quality and effectiveness.

“The vaccine is 94% effective in preventing disease, including in the elderly, and the government was one of the first to sign an agreement with the company to supply the vaccine on behalf of the UK, Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories.

“The Government has agreed to purchase an additional 10 million doses of the Moderna vaccine on top of its previous order of 7 million, taking the total to 17 million.

“As agreed when the UK originally pre-ordered the vaccine, supplies will begin to be delivered to the UK from Spring once Moderna expands its production capability.”

The two-dose Moderna vaccine has already been rolled out in the United States and Canada, while Israel also approved the shot earlier this week.

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