Coronavirus Vaccine Updates: European Union agrees to 2-year contract extension with Pfizer

COVID-19 Live Updates, News and Information
NEW YORK (WABC) -- The European Union reaffirmed its support for Pfizer's COVID vaccine by signing off on a massive contract extension.

The new contract received the unanimous backing of all 27 EU member nations.

It runs through 2023 and has the potential to provide an additional 1.8 billion doses.

Pfizer-BioNTech had an initial contract of 600 million doses with the EU.

The European Commission currently has a portfolio of 2.6 billion doses from half a dozen companies.

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Here are more of today's headlines:



India's daily COVID death toll surpasses 4,000 for first time
India's daily COVID-19 death toll surpassed 4,000 for the first time on Saturday, with Tamil Nadu becoming the latest state to announce a complete lockdown to curb surging infections. The country's health ministry reported a record 4,187 fatalities for the previous 24 hours, as well as more than 400,000 new infections for the third day in a row. India has now reported more than 21 million cases and 238,000 related deaths since the pandemic began.

Florida reports more than 10,000 COVID-19 variant cases, surge after spring break
Variant COVID-19 infections skyrocketed following spring break in Florida and there have been more than 10,000 variant cases reported throughout the state, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported based on data from the Florida Department of Health.

A total of 753 variant cases from three strains -- the B.1.1.7, the P.1, and the B. 1.3.5.1. -- were reported on March 14, according to variant infection data shared with ABC News. The Florida Department of Health does not disclose variant cases on its public dashboard.

First supply of COVID vaccines distributed to Pakistan
Pakistan on Saturday received its first supply of COVID-19 vaccines through the U.N.-backed COVAX initiative, over 1.2 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. The prime minister's special aide on health, Dr. Faisal Sultan, asked people over age 40 to register for shots and said the Pakistani government would soon be able to expand its immunization program to other age groups

Utility regulator shares discredited theories
An elected Arizona utility regulator has shared discredited conspiracy theories while trying to persuade energy and power providers not to require their employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. The Arizona Republic reports that Arizona Corporation Commission member Jim O'Connor said during an interview that the government and the news media are covering up the shots causing numerous deaths and people becoming "human vegetables," but there's no evidence of such problems.

When did you realize the COVID pandemic changed everything?
Many of us had a moment, most often occurring in March 2020, when we realized that COVID-19 had completely changed our lives forever. Even though we've managed to move forward and adapt to a new normal, that memory still sticks with us. Tell us: What was that moment to you?

Top 7 COVID vaccine questions answered
You had questions about COVID-19 vaccines and 7 On Your Side is getting you answers from doctors on the front line of the pandemic.

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