On 6 May 2021, the Swiss government announced a new contract with Moderna to deliver another 7 million more doses of its vaccine against the SARS-CoV-2 virus in early 2022.
Switzerland’s federal government said that the new contract means Switzerland is well equipped to tackle future virus mutations and should have enough vaccine to offer the entire population a very high level of immunisation protection.
Moderna is currently researching a booster shot that will also target emerging virus strains to ensure a high level of protection next year too.
Modified Moderna vaccines will be required to go through the same review process at Swissmedic, Switzerland’s drug approval agency, before being authorised for use, said the government.
The new contract reflects the federal government’s confidence in mRNA vaccines, which are proving highly effective and well tolerated.
To date, the federal government has signed contracts with five vaccine manufacturers: Moderna (13.5 million vaccine doses for 2021 and 7 million for 2022), Pfizer/BioNTech (around 6 million doses), AstraZeneca (around 5.3 million doses), Curevac (5 million doses) and Novavax (6 million doses).
Currently, only the Moderna and BioNTech/Pfizer vaccines are in use. Other vaccines are still awaiting authorisation.
According to the government, Switzerland has enough vaccine in 2021 to allow children and adolescents to be vaccinated too. However, vaccines have not yet been approved for some younger age groups.
The federal government said it would consider sharing vaccines with other countries if they are not needed in Switzerland.