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EU to Procure 40 Million Bird Flu Vaccines Following Controversial Removal of COVID Shots

EU Bird Flu Vaccine

The European Union (EU) on Monday confirmed that it is set to finalise a contract securing over 40 million doses of H5N1 bird flu vaccine for 15 countries. These doses are intended to vaccinate against the latest deadly strain of bird flu, with the initial shipments bound for Finland.

The contract with vaccine maker CSL Seqirus allows for up to 665,000 doses initially and an option for 40 million more over four years.

Procurement of the vaccine would be a joint effort between the Commission’s emergency health unit HERA and 15 countries in the EU and the European Economic Area.

These doses are meant for those most exposed to the virus, such as poultry workers and veterinarians.

Concurrently, the United States, Canada, and Britain are also pursuing preventative vaccine procurement.

The flu, caused by the H5N1 virus, has spread in the U.S., affecting mainly poultry and, recently, over 80 dairy farms.

Human-to-human transmission remains unconfirmed, with three U.S. persons infected after exposure to infected cattle since March.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has reported no active cases of bird flu in humans or cattle within the EU.

According to the ECDC’s weekly report for June 1-7, the risk of zoonotic influenza transmission to the general public in EU/EEA countries is low.

The EU Commission has already secured 111 million doses of pandemic influenza vaccines from GSK and Seqirus through HERA, which can be adjusted for different flu strains.

This comes after the allegedly deadly COVID-19 vaccine, Vaxzevria, which the EU authorised, was withdrawn worldwide following the company’s acknowledgement in court documents that it could potentially cause a rare and dangerous side effect called  Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (TTS), which has been linked to at least 81 deaths in the UK, along with many severe injuries.

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