The European Union has agreed on increasing vaccine supplies from the Pfizer/BioNTech company to the member states.
“We have just agreed with BioNTech-Pfizer to once again speed up vaccine delivery in the European Union,” the head of the European Commission wrote on Twitter.
Vaccine deliveries in the second quarter will increase by 50 million doses, or a quarter, to a total of 250 million doses, according to von der Leyen.
The Czech Republic should receive about 1.2 million doses. The country would otherwise get these vaccines by the end of the year, but now, according to Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, the country will receive them in April, May, and June.
The supply and distribution of vaccines in the European Union long-term contend with difficulties and delays, which earned the European Commission sharp criticism as it has concluded contracts with vaccine manufacturers.
The vaccine produced by the United States and a German company could compensate European states for other companies’ supply disruptions.
The head of the European Commission has admitted that, in addition to restricting supplies from AstraZeneca, the suspension of Johnson & Johnson’s distribution due to health complications in the United States is also causing problems.
“That is why it is necessary to act flexibly, anticipate and adapt whenever possible,” von der Leyen said.
According to the EC president, the EU wants to primarily use the Pfizer/BioNTech product in the expected vaccine booster shots in the coming years.
Therefore, the Commission has started negotiating a contract that will allow the member states to purchase around 1.8 billion doses by 2023.