Work group approves 2nd COVID-19 vaccine for use in Western states

Photo of a bottle of a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine
U.S. Secretary of Defense/Creative Commons
Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine has been approved by the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup. The work group reported these findings to the governors of California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington. (Photo by U.S. Secretary of Defense under CC BY 2.0)

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Deemed “safe” and “efficacious,” the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine was unanimously recommended for use by the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup on Sunday.

After a thorough review, the work group informed the governors of California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington of its findings. According to its report, the work group advises states to use the the vaccine in tandem with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to expand its COVID-19 response capabilities, including in underserved communities.

“While California is in some of the darkest days of our COVID-19 surge, with too many families grieving lost loved ones, there is light as more vaccines are approved for distribution,” said California Gov. Gavin Newsom in a statement. “With the Moderna vaccine in circulation, we have another tool to fight this deadly disease.”

Vaccine shipments are expected early this week, according to the press release. Until the vaccine is widely available, however, Newsom said in a statement that it is “critical” Californians continue to follow the stay-at-home order and wear a mask if they must leave home.

Check back for updates. 

Veronica Roseborough is a deputy news editor. Contact her at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @v_roseborough.