Coronavirus UK Updates: Europe frustrated by UK’s self-aggrandising vaccine narrative

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Coronavirus Update: How the UK will get Pfizer's Covid vaccine from factory to patient
Coronavirus Update: How the UK will get Pfizer's Covid vaccine from factory to patient

Continuing on from the previous post, Europe appears increasingly frustrated by the comments UK politicians are making about the MHRA decision to approve the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

Earlier today Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary, suggested that the UK has “the best medical regulator”. He told LBC radio that Britain had a better health regulator than France, Belgium and the US “because we’re a much better country than every single one of them”.

Meanwhile Jacob Rees Mogg has accused the European regulator of being “a bit sniffy” about the “huge British success” in approving a Covid vaccine first.

A spokesperson for the European Commission has hit back at these claims, insisting “this is not a football competition”:

“We are of course absolutely convinced that the regulators in the UK are very good but we are definitely not in the game of comparing regulators across countries nor on commenting on claims as to who is better.”This is not a football competition. We are talking about the life and the health of people.”We have in the EU a very developed system – which by the way still applies to the UK – in order to approve the authorisation of medical products, vaccines and to place them on the market.”
It looks like this debate could rumble on for some time – in the meantime find out more about when other countries could approve the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in this piece from our Global Health Security team.

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