The World Health Organization is reviewing its policies after the global health body denied Medicago’s Covifenz Covid-19 vaccine emergency-use approval, according to The Times Colonist.
The WHO denied the vaccine due to the company’s ties with the tobacco industry; Philip Morris is a minority stakeholder in Medicago.
“Medicago was informed of this decision and has been apprised of WHO’s policies on tobacco,” the WHO stated.
However, the WHO’s policies may change as the organization reevaluates its policies following the tobacco industry’s attempts to diversify into other categories.
“WHO is currently holding discussions on how to address a general trend of the tobacco industry investing in the health industry,” the WHO said.
Once the WHO makes a decision on its policies, the Medicago vaccine application could be reviewed.
Medicago is waiting on a response from the WHO detailing why the vaccine application was denied. “Once we receive this, we will review the rationale and continue to discuss next steps with our partners and shareholders,” said Takashi Nagao, Medicago’s president.