The BIMA position statement followed consultation with Muslim health care professionals, Islamic scholars, and representative bodies from across the UK.
Taking available information into account, BIMA said it “deems it advisable to administer the vaccine to eligible at-risk individuals in Muslim communities.”
BIMA also confirmed that there are no animal products in this vaccine and no animal derived cells have been used.
Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has been approved recently in the UK. According to BIMA, each vaccine will be judged independently.
The vaccine’s preliminary results that their vaccine was more than 90 percent effective were announced last month.
Unlike traditional vaccines, which works by putting weak or inactivated doses of a virus or bacteria into the body to make the immune systems produce antibodies, m-RNA vaccines work by transmitting a genetic code to cells telling them produce a protein, which in turn activates the immune system.
A Fatwa Too
On another level, scholars from some of the most influential Islamic seminaries in the UK have issued fatwa saying that the new Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is halal.
The fatwa is signed by Deobandi scholars Yusuf Shabbir and Mufti Shabbir Ahmad of Darul Uloom Blackburn, Mufti Muhammad Tahir of Darul Uloom Bury, and NHS consultant Mawlana Kallingal Riyad.
They said: “We contacted the Pfizer company requesting a breakdown of the ingredients which were shared with us. These are also available on this link. Initially, the only ingredient of concern was cholesterol, because it can be sourced from animal fat although it is normally sourced from the eggs of hens.
“The aforementioned statement from the Government confirms that it is not sourced from animal fat, therefore it is Halal. The company has also confirmed this in an email to us which states: ‘All lipid excipients used in COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine BNT162b2 are either from plant-derived sources or are synthetic. The vaccine contains no animal components.”