17th April 2021
Health Minister Carolina Darias
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Spain ‘open’ to using the Russian Sputnik V vaccine against Covid-19

Latest: Coronavirus in Spain figures (22 Feb)

Spain is ‘open’ to using Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine against Covid-19, as long as it is approved by European regulators, the new health minister Carolina Darias said on Wednesday.

The dose, named after the Soviet-era satellite, faced criticism when it was approved in Russia last year before any large-scale clinical trials.

However, analysis of data from 20,000 phase 3 trial participants, published this week in the medical journal The Lancet, suggested that the Russian vaccine was over 90% effective, putting it at a level with vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, and which Spain is currently administering. ‘No serious adverse events were deemed to be associated with vaccination [using Sputnik V],’ The Lancet reported.

‘This government will wholeheartedly welcome any vaccine which is authorised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA),’ health minister Darias told MPs in the Spanish Congress on Wednesday, when asked if Spain would consider using the Russian jab. ‘That is the only condition,’ she added.

Health Minister Carolina Darias
Health Minister Carolina Darias speaking in the Spanish Congress on 3 February 2021. (Congreso.es)

Her comments echo those of German Chancellor Angela Merkel who said yesterday all Covid-19 vaccines ‘are welcome’ in the EU once they have received regulatory approval. France has also said that it would administer the Russian dose if it meets the EU’s ‘scientific norms’.

Within the EU, Hungary is the only nation to authorise use of the vaccine without waiting for the EMA’s ruling and has so far received 40,000 doses.

Sputnik V has been approved in more than 15 countries, including ex-Soviet nations like Belarus and Armenia, allies like Venezuela and Iran, but also in Argentina, Algeria, Tunisia and Pakistan.

Latest figures (up to 2 Feb) show that Spain has now received 1,769,055 doses of Covid-19 vaccines (from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna), and that 1,673,054 jabs have been administered. This is 94.6% of total vaccines received. 418,519 people have now received a second jab. In a separate report, we have published the amount of vaccines received and administered for each region: Covid-19 Vaccinations in Spain

Click here for all previous reports on: Coronavirus in Spain

ALSO READ: Spain to keep a register of citizens who refuse Covid-19 vaccine

ALSO READ: Spain’s Health Ministry divides the population into 15 groups for vaccination

ALSO READ: Spain’s ‘Covid-19 Vaccination Strategy’ – all the key points

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