UNITED KINGDOM: The United Kingdom has become the first country in the world to have approved the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. According to a statement given by Astra Zeneca, the COVID-19 vaccine has been approved for emergency use in the UK. The first doses are believed to be released on Wednesday so that the vaccinations can begin early in the New Year.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency(MHRA), an executive agency of the Department of Health and Social Care in the UK has authorized the use of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for the immunization of individuals in the country.
The authorization recommends two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (with an interval of four and 12 weeks). In an open statement, AstraZeneca said that the recommended doses were safe and effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19. The Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine can be stored and handled at normal refrigerated conditions (36-46 degrees Fahrenheit) for at least six months.
In India, the Serum Institute of India (SII) who is the domestic maker of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine has already approved the emergency use of it.
Matt Hancock, UK Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, said, “This is a moment to celebrate British innovation – not only are we responsible for discovering the first treatment to reduce mortality for Covid-19, but this vaccine will also be made available to some of the poorest regions of the world at a low cost, helping protect countless people from this awful disease.”