Europe gives conditional approval to Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccine

Europe gives conditional approval to Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccine

A CORONAVIRUS vaccine could be rolled out across Ireland as early as next week after the EMA approved the jab today.

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has already been given to tens of thousands of people in the United Kingdom, after the country became the first in the world to approve it earlier this months.

In Europe, the vaccine faces just one final hurdle after it was approved by the European Medicines Agency today.

Ireland's Health Minister Stephen Donnelly shared a statement from the medicines agency said the approval from the EMA was "great news".

The vaccine faces one final hurdle before it can be rolled out across Europe, in that it must be approved by the European Commission, headed by Ursula von der Leyen.

The Commission is set to meet tomorrow to discuss the vaccine  and it is expected to be approved, as Ms von der Leyen said last week she expected people across Europe would begin to be vaccinated before the end of 2020.

Earlier this month, a 90-year-old Irish woman became the first person in the world to receive the fully-tested Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine.

Ms Margaret Keenan, who is from Fermanagh but now lives in Coventry, England, said the vaccine was "the best early birthday gift" as it would allow her to spend time with her children and grandchildren who she has been separated from for much of the year.