HealthDay News — The world’s first Ebola vaccine has been approved by the European Commission, and it was quickly prequalified by the World Health Organization.

The Ervebo vaccine is made by Merck and is being used in a “compassionate use” capacity in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, site of the second-largest, second-deadliest Ebola outbreak on record, ABC News reported.

The WHO’s prequalification of the vaccine means that it meets the agency’s quality, safety, and efficacy standards. The vaccine’s approval is “a historic step,” according to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, ABC News reported.

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“Five years ago, we had no vaccine and no therapeutics for Ebola,” he said in a statement. “With a prequalified vaccine and experimental therapeutics, Ebola is now preventable and treatable.”

ABC News Article