Commission secures access for Member States to 665,000 doses of zoonotic influenza vaccines to prevent avian flu

The Commission's Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA) as part of its mandate on preparedness, has signed on behalf of participating Member States, a joint procurement framework contract for the supply of up to 665,000 pre-pandemic vaccine doses of the up-to-date Zoonotic Influenza Vaccine Seqirus, as well as an option for a further 40 million doses over the duration of the contract. Thanks to this contract the participating Member States will have access to medical countermeasures to prevent avian flu.

The vaccine is intended for those most exposed to potential transfers of avian influenza from birds or animals, such as poultry farm workers and veterinarians. It aims to prevent the spread or potential outbreaks of avian influenza in Europe, protecting citizens and livelihoods. The vaccine is the only preventive zoonotic avian influenza vaccine currently authorized in the EU.

Fifteen EU and EEA Member States are participating in this voluntary procurement with the company Seqirus UK Ltd. The contract allows each participating country to take into account their public health context and order vaccines depending on national need. The contract will run for a maximum of 4 years.

Shipments are currently being prepared to Finland for immediate vaccinations of the workers at risk of exposure, at the Member State's request. Shipments to other participating countries will follow.


Seqirus UK Ltd has an EU wide modified marketing authorisation for this vaccine for use in adults, which protects against flu caused by H5 strains of the influenza A virus.

The EU's mechanism of joint procurement is laid down in the EU's Joint Procurement Agreement for Medical Countermeasures, which is signed by 36 countries, including all EU and EEA Member States. The mechanism allows the participating countries to jointly procure medical countermeasures on a voluntary and flexible basis. These countermeasures include vaccines, therapeutics, medical devices, and these can be used as an alternative or to complement to procurement at national level.

The Agreement secures a more equitable access to specific medical countermeasures and improves the security of supply, together with more balanced prices for the participating countries. The Agreement also contributes to the EU-level preparedness for public health crises or pandemics.