The Food and Drug Administration authorized BioNTech and Pfizer Inc.’s COVID-19 vaccine Friday evening, which will make it the first vaccine to reach Americans during the coronavirus pandemic. MarketWatch reports:
“The FDA’s authorization for emergency use of the first COVID-19 vaccine is a significant milestone in battling this devastating pandemic that has affected so many families in the United States and around the world,” FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn said in a statement. “Today’s action follows an open and transparent review process that included input from independent scientific and public health experts and a thorough evaluation by the agency’s career scientists to ensure this vaccine met FDA’s rigorous, scientific standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality needd to support emergency use authorization.”
The vaccine — which was developed by Germany’s BioNTech, and is being commercialized by American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer — is the first COVID-19 vaccine to receive emergency use authorization in the U.S. and the first mRNA product to ever receive any type of regulatory approval.
Since the first efficacy data was shared publicly, anticipation for the highly efficacious vaccine has largely sent up markets, which view vaccination as the beginning of the end of the COVID-19 crisis. Federal health officials have said the administration of the vaccine could begin within days of authorization.