The Argentines vaccinated with the two doses of Sputnik V who intended to travel to Europe during the summer that will begin here in three days will still not be able to do so: just in september the European Medicines Agency (EMA) could finish the evaluation process of the Russian vaccine for approval.
EMA sources indicate that date as the closest “Although it may not happen until the end of the year”, They assure taking into account that on June 10 the deadline for the Gamaleya Institute in Moscow to send them the information that the European body requires on the clinical trials carried out to include the Russian in its catalog of approved vaccines.
Sputnik V (Gam-COVID-Vac) is produced by two institutions: the Gamaleya National Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which belongs to the government of Vladimir Putin and is in charge of economic and commercial rights.
According to the RDIF, “it depends on the EMA decide the times in the approval procedure, but we hope it will take place in the next two months ”.
Have the approval of the EMA is essential so that those who have completed the coronavirus vaccination schedule with one of the approved sera – and do not have a European passport – can travel to the main destinations in the European Union without any type of sanitary control.
“A political issue”
“For unknown reasons, the Russian production company has not provided the documentation for the approval of the EMA and that makes it impossible to proceed with the review that leads to approval,” he tells Clarion the epidemiologist doctor Daniel López Acuña, former director of Health Action in Crisis of the World Health Organization (WHO).
“I think it is an issue fundamentally political with some scientific aspects ”, he adds.
Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo: Reuters
For López Acuña, “the geopolitical background of ‘cold war’ between the European Union and Russia ”.
And he adds: “I believe that, in this type of process, the WHO should play a harmonizing role much greater than the one it plays ”.
At the beginning of June, during his fleeting visit to Argentina, Spanish President Pedro Sánchez expressed his opinion on the measure that prevents Argentines vaccinated with Sputnik from traveling to Europe.
“It is one of the debates that we are having in the European Union,” Sánchez said in Buenos Aires. What you have to do is apply a huge dose of common sense. Although they are not homologated vaccines on the European continent, they are vaccines and should not be an obstacle for mobility between continents or on entering Europe ”.
But the good intention of Sánchez, for now, It is not more than that.
He himself, in mid-May, announced with euphoria at the Madrid Tourism Fair: “People from all countries with which there is not full freedom of movement will be able to enter Spain as long as they have a certificate of having received the complete vaccination schedule authorized by the European Union of Medicines or by the World Health Organization ”.
Argentines, for now, to keep waiting.