05/06 06:05 CDT Pfzier and BioNTech to donate vaccines for Olympic athletes
Pfzier and BioNTech to donate vaccines for Olympic athletes
LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) --- Vaccine developers Pfizer and BioNTech will
donate doses to inoculate athletes and officials preparing for the Tokyo
Olympics, the IOC said Thursday.
Delivery of doses is set to begin this month to give Olympic delegations time
to be fully vaccinated with a second shot before arriving in Tokyo for the
games, which open on July 23.
It's the second major vaccination deal for the International Olympic Committee.
An agreement was announced in March between the IOC and Olympic officials in
China to buy and distribute Chinese vaccines ahead of the Tokyo Games and next
year's Beijing Winter Games.
The new Pfizer offer gives the IOC greater coverage worldwide ahead of Tokyo
with most countries yet to authorize emergency use of Chinese vaccines.
"We are inviting the athletes and participating delegations of the upcoming
Olympic and Paralympic Games to lead by example and accept the vaccine where
and when possible," IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement.
The Pfizer donation followed talks between the firm's chairman and CEO, Albert
Bourla, and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.
"Following this conversation, the Japanese government had a meeting with the
IOC and now the donation plan has been realized," Pfizer said in a statement.
The IOC said any vaccination program must be done "in accordance with each
country's vaccination guidelines and consistent with local regulations."
The IOC-China vaccine deal includes two does being made available to the
general public for each dose received by an Olympic participant in that country.
More AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/olympic-games and