Thanks to a government decree, on Friday, Hungary became the first EU member state to approve the vaccine of the Chinese Sinopharm. With the help of this, based on some calculations, the restrictions might end in May. However, the Hungarian Medical Chamber did not support the government’s decision allowing the Chinese vaccine without proper examination done by the European or Hungarian health authorities. Details below.
Based on hvg.hu, the government issued a decree on Thursday night saying that all vaccines administered to at least a million people anywhere in the world can get emergency approval in Hungary. Since that is true for the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine, the National Institute of Pharmacy and Nutrition gave its approval on Friday. There are already
twenty million people who received the state-owned pharmaceutical company’s product.
That number includes 300 thousand Serbian citizens.
In his regular Friday morning interview, PM Viktor Orbán said that “he put his faith in the Chinese vaccine since China has been handling the virus longer than any other country and understood it the most.” That is not the first time that Hungary acts differently to other EU countries. Last week, Budapest issued a provisional license for Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine. Brussels said that this act was improper but not illegal since the member states agreed to cooperate in purchasing mRNA vaccines from Western companies.
According to portfolio.hu, the Hungarian Medical Chamber emphasised that the Hungarian authorities should follow the European and Hungarian pharmaceutical regulations and should only issue a provisional license
if all the necessary examinations are done properly.
The medical chamber added that it is the only way to help doctors do their job in good conscience and faith.
As we reported before, Hungary contracted to get five million doses of the coronavirus vaccine produced by Chinese company Sinopharm, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said on Friday. He added that he had signed an agreement to purchase the vaccine,
enough to inoculate 2.5 million people,
on Friday after talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. Sinopharm will deliver the vaccine in four phases, over a period of four months, he said. The National Institute of Pharmacy and Nutrition (OGYEI) green-lighted the use of the vaccine in Hungary earlier on Friday. Szijjártó said the large quantities ordered would speed up the inoculation process and “might save thousands of lives”. Lifting the restrictions may also come sooner with mass inoculation, he said.
According to portfolio.hu, the vaccination coverage will reach 60 pc this May in Hungary. The calculation takes into consideration the Chinese contract announced on Friday and says that thanks to that, lockdown could end at the beginning of May, but they emphasised that
there are still many factors of uncertainty.
Source: portfolio.hu, hvg.hu, Daily News Hungary