The American laboratory Pfizer, which developed with the German BioNTech one of the first vaccines authorized in Europe against the Covid-19, indicated to have started to “adapt” its deliveries after having noted the number of doses available per vial.
Until recently, the laboratory delivered to purchasing countries on the basis of five doses of vaccine per vial. But vaccination centers managed to draw six doses, fueling the hope of being able to vaccinate more people with the vials already delivered.
Extra dose and production delays
This announcement is not to everyone’s liking. European countries, already strongly criticized for the slowness of vaccination campaigns, are protesting against this announcement by Pfizer, less than a week after that of a “Drop in pace” in vaccine production.
However, the European Medicines Agency, “authorized the use of the extra volume present in the vaccine vials, considering that it corresponded to a sixth dose” Pfizer insists. The laboratory says it will keep its commitments to deliver orders that “have always been based on a total number of doses and not vials”.
A not so simple medical gesture
As of January 18, France had received 1.6 million doses. For the Ministry of Health, extracting an additional dose from the current stock requires “a medical gesture” and “equipment”, that is, a specific syringe.
In other words, not all vaccination centers in the country would be able to obtain this additional dose. This could further extend vaccination times if production and delivery delays are confirmed by the manufacturer.
A delay easily caught up?
So should we fear a shortage? We will have to wait to find out. Pfizer and BioNTech Laboratories Announce Plan to Return to Initial Schedule of Deliveries to the European Union “from the week of January 25”. The delay in delivery would thus be caught up “at the end of the first trimester”, according to Agnès Pannier-Runacher, French Minister for Industry.
The French government is maintaining its objectives for the moment: to have vaccinated all French people against the coronavirus by the end of August. The threshold of one million French people vaccinated was exceeded this Saturday, January 23.