May 1, 2021 - Health

WHO lists Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

Picture of a health care worker administering a Moderna vaccine to a patient

A health care worker administers the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the American Museum of Natural History vaccination site in New York on April 30. Photo: Gabby Jones/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The World Health Organization late Friday listed Moderna's coronavirus vaccine for emergency use.

Why it matters: With the listing, WHO authorizes that the mRNA vaccine can be part of the U.N.-backed COVAX initiative, which looks to ensure that every country in the world has access to inocculations.

The big picture: To date, WHO has also approved Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson and two versions of the AstraZeneca vaccine for emergency use.

  • WHO recommended in January that the Moderna vaccine be used for people who are 18 years and older, after it was found to be over 94% effective.

What they're saying: CEO Stephane Bancel said Friday that Moderna was "actively participating in discussions with multilateral organizations, such as COVAX, to help protect populations around the world."

What to watch: Comparable authorizations for China's Sinopharm and Sinovac shots are anticipated in the days and weeks ahead, WHO has said, per AP.

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