The UK’s regulatory authority has approved Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for use in the country.
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said in a statement the Moderna vaccine met the strict standards of safety, efficacy and quality set by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
Moderna’s shot becomes the third vaccine to be approved in the UK after Pfizer-BioNTech and the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccines that have already been rolled out across Britain as part of a mass immunisation programme. However, the supply of the new vaccine can only be expected later this year, the company said .
“We have already vaccinated nearly 1.5 million people across the UK and Moderna’s vaccine will allow us to accelerate our vaccination programme even further once doses become available from the spring,” health minister Matt Hancock said.
The UK is now recording high COVID-19 related deaths. Britain on Friday reported a record 1,325 deaths from people testing positive for coronavirus.
On Thursday, government figures showed that another 1,162 people were reported to have died within 28 days of testing positive for the virus. The daily cases surged to 68,053 in the past day, nudging the overall number of COVID-19 infections close to three million.