Dubai has just authorised the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, with the government all set to begin an “extensive” inoculation campaign kicking off immediately.
This is the second vaccine made available in the UAE following the Sinopharm vaccine which was approved for nationwide use last month.
A “Wide and Free” Campaign Against Covid-19
Dubai’s Supreme Committee for Crisis and Disaster Management said that a “wide and free vaccination campaign against Covid-19 with the Pfizer vaccine” would kick off immediately.
The Ministry of Health announced the emergency registration of the vaccine in the country late on Tuesday.
Safe And Effective
This decision was reportedly made after tests showed that the vaccine was found to be safe and effective.
The UAE Fatwa Council has also issued a ruling allowing vaccines to be used in compliance with Islamic law.
“Coronavirus vaccination is classified under preventive medicines for individuals, as recommended by the Islamic faith, particularly in times of pandemic diseases when the healthy happen to be prone to infections due to the high risk of contracting the disease, therefore posing risk to the entire society,” the Council explained.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine is also approved for use in the UK, US, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Bahrain.
So will this vaccine be effective in combatting the new strain of the virus?
Ugur Sahin, the founder of BioNTech, which created the vaccination with pharmaceutical company Pfizer, said that they would know within two weeks whether the drug would immunise against the new strain which is sparking a surge of infections in a number of countries.
“We don’t know at the moment if our vaccine is also able to provide protection against this new variant,” Sahin said after the drug was approved for use in European Union countries.
“But scientifically, it is highly likely that the immune response by this vaccine can also deal with the new virus variants.”