The US sets a deal with the leading drugmaker Moderna for purchasing the company's new generation of COVID-19 vaccine. The new generations of vaccines will target Omicron. The number of supplies is estimated at 66 million doses.
The purchased supplies will be enough for the required booster shots in Winter. In the same context, the US secured 105 million from upgraded COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine.
Both shipments are scheduled to arrive by fall and winter, and the contract is worth $ 1.74 billion.
Omicron's subvariants are currently the dominant strain in the US since last December, and they driving more waves of infections nationwide.
Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra said: “We must stay vigilant in our fight against COVID-19 and continue to expand Americans’ access to the best vaccines and treatments."
“As we look to the fall and winter, we’re doing just that — ensuring Americans have the tools they need to stay safe and help keep our nation moving forward.”
The upgraded Coronavirus vaccine developed by Moderna showed a strong response to the Omicron variant, better than the previous version of the vaccine.
Published last June, the study was conducted by the company and targeted using the developed vaccine as booster shots against Coronavirus in the upcoming weeks.
Moderna’s new vaccine is not only directed to Omicron but also to the original strains of the virus.
Moderna Official Stephen Bancel said: “We anticipate more durable protection against variants of concern with mRNA-1273.214, making it our lead candidate for a Fall 2022 booster.”
On his side, an epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health David Dowdy reflected: “I would be cautiously optimistic that this bivalent vaccine will be at least a little more effective against Omicron than the original vaccine, but it’s far too early to talk about it being any sort of game-changer.”
Last April, the US drugmaker announced it had submitted a request for an emergency use approval for its COVID-19 vaccine for children ages ranging between 6 months and 6 years.