France, UK approve Moderna vaccine in race against Covid-19

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                L'autorité nationale de la santé française a annoncé vendredi qu'elle avait approuvé le vaccin de Moderna pour les personnes de 18 ans et plus, qui sera déployé dans les semaines à venir.  Cela fait suite à une validation de l'UE mercredi.  Les autorités britanniques lui ont également donné le feu vert.  
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                                    <p>La décision ouvre la voie à une deuxième option de vaccin après le coup de pouce Pfizer-BioNTech dans une campagne de vaccination qui a été assaillie par les critiques comme étant loin derrière celles de ses voisins.

The Moderna shot, validated by the European regulator EMA on Wednesday, could also be used for people over 75, since data so far suggests an effective rate of 86% for older people, up from 94% for young adults.

The head of the French government’s vaccination campaign, Alain Fischer, told BFM radio that the first deliveries of the Moderna shots “should take place in the next few days, or at the latest in the second half of January”.

French authorities reported on Thursday 21,703 new cases and 277 deaths, bringing the French death toll to 66,841.

France is seeking to vaccinate a million people before the end of January, to speed up a process that has started slowly. The government is also concerned about the presence of a new variant of the virus.

London gives the green light

Britain approved a third Covid-19 vaccine on Friday for its mass inoculation campaign, as regulators gave the green light to a vaccine developed by the American company Moderna.

Some 1.5 million people have received doses of Pfizer-BioNTech or Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines since early December, and the government aims to have 15 million vaccinated by mid-February.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the approval of the Moderna jab by the Independent Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) was another boost for the program.

“This is another great news and another weapon in our arsenal to tame this terrible disease,” he said.

1000 new vaccination sites

Britain has ordered 17 million doses of the vaccine, which will be delivered in the coming months once Moderna increases its production capacity, he added.

Elderly residents and nursing home staff, those over 70, and clinically extremely vulnerable people are the first to participate in the blows, and the government has stepped up the program to meet its February target.

More than 1,000 new vaccination sites, including community pharmacies and even supermarket parking lots, are expected to be open by the end of this week.

A total of 1,162 new deaths within 28 days of a positive test were recorded on Thursday – the highest since the peak of the first wave in April of last year.

Overall, some 2.9 million people have been infected in the UK. Stay-at-home restrictions, which include school closures, are expected to last until at least mid-February.

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