The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has provided an update on the use of Covid-19 vaccines by pilots and air traffic controllers (ATCs).

The FAA Office of Aerospace Medicine (AAM) has determined to allow holders of FAA-issued Airman Medical Certificates or Medical Clearances to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.

This update follows the Emergency Use Authorization for the vaccine issued by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

It is also based on a careful review of available data concerning safety profiles about the vaccine.

FAA in a statement said: “The FAA anticipates taking no additional measures to ensure safety after the initial window for side effects closes.

“However, the agency’s medical professionals will continuously monitor the initial distribution of the novel vaccine and documented clinical results and will adjust these recommendations as needed.

“The FAA will evaluate vaccines from other manufacturers as they receive FDA authorisation in the coming weeks and months and will advise pilots and air traffic controllers of any waiting periods required for those vaccines.”

After receiving the vaccine, aviation professionals will be required to observe a no fly/no safety-related duty interval period of 48 hours to ensure safety in the National Airspace System.

The Pfizer vaccine requires two doses that are administered 21 days apart to achieve maximum effectiveness.

Meanwhile, the first cargo plane Airbus A300 ferrying Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine for domestic use took off from the Gerald R. Ford International Airport on 13 December.

The vaccine requires to be kept at -94 Fahrenheit. Airbus A300 can transport up to 105,000lb of cargo.