WHO says reviewing Pfizer vaccine for possible emergency listing

Britain approved Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine, jumping ahead of the United States and Europe. PHOTO: REUTERS

GENEVA (REUTERS) - The World Health Organisation said on Wednesday (Dec 2) it had received data from Pfizer and BioNTech on the Covid-19 vaccine and was reviewing it for "possible listing for emergency use", a benchmark for countries to authorise national use.

Referring to Britain's regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, it said in a statement to Reuters: "WHO is also in discussions with MHRA on the possibility of accessing some of the information from their assessment, which could expedite WHO's emergency listing".

Britain approved Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine on Wednesday, jumping ahead of the United States and Europe to become the West's first country to formally endorse a shot it said should reach the most vulnerable people early next week.

Mike Ryan, WHO's top emergency expert, welcomed the news, adding: "We shouldn't stop, we need more than 3-4 vaccines.

"We need to increase production, we need to pull the price down," he told a social media event. "We need a one-dose vaccine."

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