Hungary becomes first EU country to register Russia’s ‘Sputnik V’ coronavirus vaccine
Hungary’s National Institute of Pharmacy and Nutrition has registered Russia’s “Sputnik V” coronavirus vaccine for use, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) announced on Thursday, January 21.
Thus Hungary has become the first country in the European Union to authorize the use of Sputnik V. The vaccine was approved under the emergency use authorization procedure. The approval is based on the results of the clinical trials of Sputnik V in Russia and a comprehensive assessment of the vaccine by experts in Hungary.
The RDIF, which has financed the Russian vaccine’s development, plans to start shipping doses of Sputnik V to Hungary in February.
The Hungarian government also announced on Thursday that the coronavirus vaccine made by AstraZeneca had been given preliminary approval for use, Reuters reported.
That said, both the AstraZeneca vaccine and Sputnik V have yet to be approved by the European Medicines Agency — the EU’s general regulator of medicinal products.
According to the World Health Organization, Hungary has recorded more than 354,000 cases of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic and more than 11,600 coronavirus deaths.
Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine has been given emergency use authorization in Argentina, Bolivia, Serbia, Algeria, Palestine, Venezuela, Paraguay, and Turkmenistan. The drug is also registered for use in Russia and Belarus.
According to Sputnik V’s developers, their vaccine is 91.4 percent effective. Astrazeneca’s assessed its drug’s effectiveness at 70.4 percent.