fredag 1. januar 2021

China approves Sinopharm Covid-19 vaccine, promises free shots for all citizens

China approved its first homegrown coronavirus vaccine for general public use on Thursday, with officials promising to provide the general public with free inoculations. The approval comes a day after its manufacturer, state-owned pharmaceutical giant Sinopharm, said the vaccine is 79.34% effective, citing interim analysis of Phase 3 clinical trials.

Though no detailed efficacy data for the vaccine has been released, the decision to grant approval underscores claims made by Chinese officials in recent weeks over the safety and effectiveness of the country's domestically produced vaccine candidates. China is aiming to inoculate 50 million people with domestic Covid-19 vaccines ahead of February's Lunar New Year celebrations. It has also drastically scaled up its vaccine emergency use program in recent weeks.

Zeng Yixin, vice-minister of China's National Health Commission, said at a news conference Thursday that the Sinopharm vaccine will be provided free of charge to Chinese citizens.