Moderna boosts COVID-19 vaccine output for 2021 to at least 600 million doses

Moderna on Monday said it expects to produce a minimum of 600 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine mRNA-1273 globally this year, up from an earlier estimate of 500 million, and that it is still working to build up to potentially 1 billion doses for 2021. The company also plans to deliver about 100 million doses of mRNA-1273 by the end of March in the US, where it was granted an emergency-use authorisation (EUA) on December 18, with 200 million doses available by the end of the second quarter.

According to Moderna, approximately 18 million doses of the vaccine have so far been supplied to the US government, which has purchased a total of 200 million doses from the company to date, and has an option to buy another 300 million. Moderna noted that additional doses have also been supplied to the Canadian government, which has agreed to purchase 40 million, following authorisation of the vaccine by health regulators there on December 23.

Successful ramp-up of mRNA vaccine

Juan Andres, chief technical operations and quality officer at Moderna, stated "our effectiveness in providing early supply to the US and Canadian governments and our ability to increase baseline production estimates for 2021 are both signals that our scale-up of mRNA vaccine production is a success."

Separately on Monday, a spokesperson for the EU indicated that a panel of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) was meeting ahead of schedule to discuss potential authorisation of Moderna's vaccine in the region, where it has been undergoing a rolling review since November. The EMA's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use had been scheduled to meet later in the week on January 6.

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