Ottawa: Canada may not be able to donate millions of doses of the only COVID-19 vaccine made in the country because the World Health Organization is leaning against granting it an emergency-use licence.
Medicago’s two-dose Covifenz vaccine was authorized by Health Canada in February for adults 18 to 64. In clinical trials it was more than 70 per cent effective at preventing COVID-19 infections and 100 per cent effective against severe illness, prior to the Omicron wave.
Medicago has also submitted an application to get their vaccine _ the only one in the world that uses vaccine-like particles grown in a plant _ approved by the World Health Organization.
However, tobacco company Philip Morris owns about one-fifth of Medicago, and the WHO indicated Wednesday that the application was unlikely to proceed for that reason.
Dr. Mariangela Sim?o, WHO’s assistant director general for drug access, vaccines and pharmaceuticals, said the WHO has strict policies about engaging with tobacco companies and arms manufacturers. As such, she said the review process for Medicago is on hold, and