TALLINN – The working group for COVID-19 coordination at the Ministry of Social Affairs has proposed to the minister of health and labor that Estonia refrain from purchasing 10,000 doses of the coronavirus vaccine manufactured by Valneva.
Primary, second and booster doses will continue to be given in Estonia using the Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna and Novavax vaccines.
"Estonia's vaccine needs for the coming season have been covered by the Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech contracts, and the quantities available under these contracts rather exceed Estonia's current needs," Minister of Health and Labor Peep Peterson said in a press release on Friday.
The European Union concluded a pre-purchase agreement with vaccine manufacturer Valneva for the purchase of the vaccine based on inactivated virus in November 2021, with the condition that the vaccine will receive a European Union marketing authorization by May of this year at the latest. Since Valneva obtained the marketing authorization later than stipulated in the contract, many countries have expressed the desire to terminate the contracts.
The European Commission has initiated an amendment of the agreement with Valneva, which allows countries to obtain the quantity indicated in the original agreement, reduce the quantity, or abandon the quantities ordered. Most of the countries that have joined the agreement are planning to abandon the ordered quantities, with Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland and Germany still planning to purchase the Valneva vaccine.
Estonia has purchased coronavirus vaccines from five manufacturers. Mainly mRNA-based vaccines are used in Europe and Estonia: Pfizer/BioNTech's Comirnaty and Moderna's Spikevax. The AstraZeneca vaccine is no longer in use.