Moderna proposes filling vials with additional doses of COVID-19 vaccine

(Reuters) – Moderna Inc said on Monday it is proposing filling vials with additional doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to ease a crunch in manufacturing as the company approaches the manufacturing of almost a million doses a day.

“The company is proposing filling vials with additional doses of vaccine, up to 15 doses versus the current 10 doses,” Moderna said in an emailed statement.

“Moderna would need to have further discussions with the FDA to assure the agency’s comfort with this approach before implementing,” the company said, referring to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

FILE PHOTO: Boxes containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine are prepared to be shipped at the McKesson distribution center in Olive Branch, Mississippi, U.S. December 20, 2020. Paul Sancya/Pool via REUTERS

Moderna’s president, Stephen Hoge, said in the statement that the additional doses would help address capacity constraints, noting that “beyond the amount of drug product available, is how many vials you can fill in a given period of time.”

CNBC reported on Friday that Moderna had asked the FDA for permission to fill its COVID-19 vaccine vials with up to five additional doses.

U.S. distribution of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine began in December following the FDA’s emergency use authorization, making it the second COVID-19 vaccine to receive approval in the United States.

The FDA told Reuters in December that extra doses from vials of Pfizer Inc’s COVID-19 vaccine could be used after reports of vaccine doses being thrown away by pharmacists due to labeling confusion.

As of Monday morning, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had administered 32,222,402 doses of COVID-19 vaccines and distributed 49,936,450 doses.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Leslie Adler


Reuters source: