EU reaches 70 percent vaccine delivery goal for adults

EU reaches 70 percent vaccine delivery goal for adults
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The European Union (EU) has reached its goal of delivering enough coronavirus vaccines to fully vaccinate at least 70 percent of its adult population, officials announced Saturday.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in a video posted to Twitter that 500 million vaccine doses will have been distributed across the EU by Sunday.

She hailed the vaccination campaign as a “success” and said the bloc is prepared to deliver more vaccines as variants of the coronavirus emerge.

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“Our vaccination campaign has accelerated tremendously since the beginning of the year. Our joint approach is a success. We will only come out of this crisis together,” von der Leyen said.

“COVID-19 is not yet defeated. But we are prepared to deliver more vaccines, including against new variants. Now, member states must do everything to increase vaccinations. Only then will we be safe,” she added.

The EU has purchased billions of vaccine doses from Pfizer and BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Johnson & Johnson.

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Reuters reported last week that some European countries have purchased about 40 million additional doses of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine.

However, the bloc has also entered advanced purchasing agreements for other vaccines that have yet to be authorized, including a vaccine co-developed by Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline and another from German pharmaceutical company CureVac.

It is also in exploratory talks to purchase vaccines from Novavax and French company Valneva.

According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, 63.8 percent of adults in the EU and European Economic Area have had at least one vaccine dose, while 44.1 percent have been fully inoculated.