Ayuso’s negotiations for Sputnik, much ado about nothing

Four weeks after the elections in the Community of Madrid, the news has become known that members of the Government of Isabel Díaz Ayuso have held up to three meetings with representatives of the Russian vaccine Sputnik in order to reach some kind of “pre-agreement” shopping.

The Madrid Ministry of Health did so, in addition, without the approval (or knowledge) of the Ministry of Health or the Spanish Medicines Agency (AEMPS) itself. Faced with these bilateral and not very transparent negotiations, the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, defended this Tuesday the centralized purchase of vaccines by the European Commission, and has asked the autonomies “responsibility, seriousness, loyalty and solidarity.”

No powers and no green light from the EMA

According to El País, citing health sources, the autonomous communities do not have the powers to negotiate the purchase of vaccines on their own, and must be governed by the conversations that the European Union (EU) maintains with pharmaceutical companies.

All this, in addition, when not even the European Medicines Agency (EMA) has authorized the use of the Russian vaccine, to which the scientific journal The Lancet has attributed an efficacy of 92% after the two necessary doses.

Since last March 4, the EMA has analyzed the clinical trials and studies carried out so far with Sputnik, but has not yet issued any verdict in this regard. Only when the EMA gave the green light, the European Commission would ratify (or not) its use in the EU.

Sources from the Ministry of Health assure that, with their meetings with the representatives of the Russian vaccine, they only wanted to “speed up the negotiation for Madrid and all of Spain, regardless of who c …

This article originally appeared on The HuffPost and has been updated.