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Moderna COVID-19 vaccine: Full FDA approval vs emergency authorization

Full FDA approval would likely mean more businesses require the shot, and patients would be able to access the vaccine once the COVID-19 pandemic ends.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Moderna is the latest drugmaker to apply for full approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of its COVID-19 vaccine

 But you may be wondering, what's the difference between that and the emergency use authorization? First, full FDA approval of the vaccine likely means a lot more people will get vaccinated. 

Let's connect the dots. 

In a public health emergency, the process of making, approving and distributing a vaccine is streamlined, all in the name of efficiency. 

Now, Pfizer and Moderna are seeking what's considered full FDA approval for their vaccines. What does this mean for you and your family? 

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RELATED: North Carolina to give away $25 cash cards as incentive to get COVID-19 vaccine

Full approval means the FDA is looking at six months of data instead of just two. You'll also start seeing TV commercials because drugmakers are allowed to market their vaccine like they would with any other medicine once given FDA approval. 

Full approval also means more businesses and schools will require the shots. Some places were hesitant to mandate a vaccine that only had emergency authorization. 

RELATED: Yes, employees required to get vaccinated for COVID-19 can file a workers’ compensation claim for vaccine adverse effects

And finally, full FDA approval means you'll have access to get the vaccine even once the pandemic is over. 

Contact Ben Thompson at bthompson@wcnc.com and follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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