The covid-19 vaccines, registered in the EU, provide significant protection against severe disease, hospitalisation and death, even in infections caused by new variants of SARS-CoV-2. Vaccination may not, in all cases, prevent the eventual infection with covid-19. It is essential to prevent the severe course of the covid-19 disease.
The evolution of the covid-19 pandemic to date has shown that at any time in the future, there may be a recurrent need for the development of modified covid-19 vaccines to protect against new variants, as is the case with influenza vaccination, where the vaccine formulation is changed each year according to the circulating influenza strains.
The EMA continuously monitors the emergence of new SARS-CoV-2 variants and the effectiveness of available vaccines.
The optimal solution for the new virus variants is the subject of ongoing discussions with the vaccine companies. At the same time, all vaccine companies must investigate whether their vaccines provide protection against the new virus variants and submit their findings to the EMA for assessment.