Volunteers prepared doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at Forand Manor in Central Falls, RI on December 30, 2020.
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The European Medicines Agency on Wednesday recommended Moderna's coronavirus vaccine for use in the European Union, At a time when criticism of the slow introduction of shocks across the block is growing.
"The EMA's Human Medicines Committee has thoroughly assessed the data on the quality, safety and efficacy of the vaccine and has mutually recommended that the European Commission issue formal conditional marketing authorization," said an EMA statement.
Emer Cooke, managing director of Amsterdam-based EMA, added that Moderna's vaccine "gives us yet another tool in overcoming the current emergency". This paves the way for the European Commission, the EU executive, to follow suit.
Moderna's vaccine is the second to be given a green light by European regulators. However, the spread of vaccination in the UK and US, where it was previously approved, has already started.
Some lawmakers have raised concerns that the EU is too slow to distribute coronavirus vaccines among its citizens.
The use of Covid-19 shocks varies by block. France reported 516 vaccinations in the first week of its rollout, while Germany had around 240,000 vaccinations on Sunday. The Netherlands has not yet started vaccinating people against the coronavirus.
There are also questions about whether the EU has bought enough vaccines.
A number of officials have asked the European Commission, the EU's executive branch, to explain why it has not bought any more jams.
A European Commission spokesman said Monday that the institution "has been very focused on making sure our strategy is being implemented well".
Moderna shares rose slightly ahead of the launch due to the announcement.