On June 2, 2021, the World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) held “COVID-19 Vaccines and People with Bleeding Disorders: Safety and Accessibility”, a webinar that addressed the concerns and needs of the global bleeding disorders community, allowing them to approach vaccination with greater confidence.
Over 300 participants from 118 countries joined the event to listen to the presentations and participate in the Q&A period. The webinar featured speakers from a number of key organizations at the forefront of pandemic vaccination efforts, including the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the World Health Organization (WHO). WFH experts were also on the panel in order to offers participants a complete set of recommendations for PWBD.
The event started with a presentation by Cedric Hermans, MD, PhD, WFH Medical board member (Belgium), who covered key issues in COVID-19 vaccines for PWBDs. The next two presentations—by Manuela Mura, PhD, Scientific Officer, European Medicines Agency (Netherlands) and Peter Marks, MD, PhD, Director, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, FDA (U.S.A.)—focused on the authorization and safety of COVID-19 vaccines, with a focus on the regulators’ perspectives from the European Union and the U.S.A, respectively. The last presentation, by Claudia Nannei, Senior Technical Officer, WHO (Switzerland), reviewed new information on the COVAX initiative from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI); Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; and the WHO.
“With an impressive panel of speakers representing the FDA, EMA and the COVAX project in collaboration with the WHO, the webinar provided an update on the global access to COVID vaccines, as well as up-to-date information on the FDA and EMA safety and efficacy assessments of COVID vaccines. Vaccine distribution is greatly imbalanced between high income and low-income countries, yet if we don’t vaccinate everyone as rapidly as possible, we all risk [being exposed to] COVID variants that will prolong the pandemic everywhere.”
—Glenn Pierce, MD, PhD, Vice-President Medical, WFH
The presentations were followed by a dynamic question and answer period, which included the expertise of Glenn Pierce, MD, PhD, WFH Vice President, Medical (U.S.A); and Radoslaw F. Kaczmarek, PhD, WFH Coagulation Product Safety, Supply, and Access (CPSSA) Committee chair (Poland/U.S.A.) along with the other panel members.
If you missed the webinar, you can listen to it on the WFH eLearning Platform by clicking here. You can also watch the March 12, 2021 webinar—“COVID-19 Treatment and Vaccination for PWBDs”—by clicking here. To attend the other webinars that the WFH is organizing, you can consult our calendar of events here.