Chinese Covid-19 Vaccine Maker in Talks With Countries on Early Approval

China’s military has already approved the use of CanSino’s vaccine before the completion of large-scale final testing.

Photo: thomas peter/Reuters

A Chinese pharmaceutical maker is in talks with several countries to get emergency approval to use an experimental Covid-19 vaccine, developed with the Chinese military, before the completion of large-scale safety and effectiveness trials, according to a senior executive at the company.

Early distribution by CanSino Biologics Inc. would give the company a head start over rivals by making its vaccine the first to go into public use internationally outside of clinical trials, although initial doses would likely be directed at health-care workers and others deemed essential, such as military personnel and police.

The effort shows the intensity of the race to become the first to develop a vaccine, though public-health experts say immunizing people widely before large-scale tests are completed could present serious health risks.

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