Danish health authorities sought vaccine supply ‘outside of EU arrangement’

Danish health authorities sought vaccine supply 'outside of EU arrangement'
Photo: Stephane Mahe/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix
Health authorities in Denmark asked Covid-19 vaccine supplier Pfizer to sell them vaccines outside of the EU agreement, according to a media report.

Although Denmark is part of the EU joint strategy to purchase Covid-19 vaccines, national infectious disease agency State Serum Institute (SSI), along with the Danish Medicines Agency, asked Pfizer to provide vaccines faster and in a higher number than Denmark is entitled to through the EU scheme, newspaper Jyllands-Posten reports.

In return, Denmark could provide clinical data for the company to analyse the efficacy of its product, according to the reported offer.

“It's clear that at the current time in the epidemic, it would be a huge advantage to get more vaccines faster,” Henrik Ullum, the head of SSI, told Jyllands-Posten.

The government did not comment on whether it green-lighted the offer, when approached by the paper.

The offer was made at a meeting with Pfizer’s northern European sales organisation in New Year’s Eve, Jyllands-Posten writes.

Denmark, in a mooted partnership with Iceland, offered to provide clinical field data to the company in return for an additional vaccine supply, according to the newspaper.

An agreement both within and outside of the EU procurement agreements was discussed. Pfizer did not express any position on the offer and Ullum no longer sees it as an option, while the company has also declined to comment on the report, the newspaper writes.

Denmark is currently the leading country in the EU in terms of the proportion of people who have received the first dose of the vaccine relevant to the whole population. 2.04 percent of people in Denmark had received the first dose as of January 12th.

Globally, Israel is by far the most advanced with vaccinations at 22.01 percent (January 13th). The United Kingdom is at 3.89 percent (January 12th) and the United States 3.11 percent (January 13th), having approved the Pfizer vaccine earlier than the EU. The figures come from Our World in Data.

COMPARE: How fast are European countries vaccinating their populations?

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