When you think of Covid-19 vaccines, you probably think of Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson (and likely in that order!). Well, according to a recent New York Times article, there’s a new player in the vaccine game, and it’s from China’s Sinopharm. Last Friday, the World Health Organization approved the vaccine for emergency use, allowing the vaccine to be included in Covax, the W.H.O.’s global program for promoting equitable access to vaccines around the world.
The need for vaccines is high right now, especially in poorer countries as richer countries continue to hoard doses. Rare side effects associated with the AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson vaccines have caused some countries to briefly pause use and change guidance, which has also contributed to the shortages. The approval of the Sinopharm vaccine is expected to improve the global vaccine distribution, as well as the potential approval of another Chinese shot from Sinovac.