WHO validates China’s Sinopharm Covid vaccine for emergency use

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday approved the Covid-19 vaccine developed by China’s Sinopharm for emergency use.

The move paves the way for the Sinopharm vaccine to be rolled out globally.

“This afternoon, the WHO gave emergency use listing to Sinopharm, Beijing’s Covid-19 vaccine, making it the sixth vaccine to receive WHO validation for safety, efficacy and quality,” WHO Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus said during a webinar on Covid-19.

The Sinopharm vaccine is produced by Beijing Bio-Institute of Biological Products Co Ltd, a subsidiary of China National Biotec Group.

“The Sinopharm product is an inactivated vaccine called SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine (Vero Cell). Its easy storage requirements make it highly suitable for low-resource settings,” said the WHO.

The Sinopharm vaccine is already in use in 42 countries around the world.

Earlier this week, the European Medicine Agency (EMA) started a rolling review of the second Chinese Covid-19 vaccine called Sinovac, Xinhua news agency reported.

“The vaccine triggers the production of antibodies that target SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, and may help protect against the disease,” said the EMA.

The WHO has given emergency use for vaccines made by Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson and Johnson and the AstraZeneca jab (being producing in India as Covishield and South Korea).