Vaccinations against the new coronavirus are expected to start soon, Dr. Christos Petrou, Associate Professor of the Pharmacy Program at the University of Nicosia, told CNA on Wednesday, adding that the distribution of vaccines in Europe will begin in the last ten days of December.
Petrou said that Pfizer and BioNTech submitted yesterday the final application for their vaccine, while the European Medicines Agency is expected to complete the licensing process before December 29.
This means, he explained, that the vaccine will be available in the European Union before December 29.
Dr Petrou said that during the first phase, around 48,000 doses of vaccines will arrive in Cyprus, which will serve about 24,000 people as this is a two-dose vaccine.
At a later stage, another 78,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine will be delivered in the first quarter of 2021, while with the completion of the licensing procedures, several thousand doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine will also be delivered.
The vaccines, he pointed out, can be licensed once their effectiveness and safety are confirmed, adding that four vaccines are currently in the assessment phase.
Petrou said that the Pfizer vaccine and the Moderna vaccine have submitted the final application for marketing authorization, while the Pfizer vaccine is expected to complete its procedures by December 29, and the Moderna vaccine by January 12.
As soon as a vaccine is approved by the European Medicines Agency, he added, it needs to be validated by the European Commission and distribution begins immediately.