Pune-based Serum Institute of India’s (SII) Covishield and Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin have been given the emergency use authorization based on restriction and there needs to be no dilemma adhering to their safety and efficacy said Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog on Tuesday. VK Paul further added that the two vaccines against Covid-19 infection have been tried and tested on thousands of people in the clinical trials and has reported negligible side effects.
He added, “There is no risk of any significance.”
Union Health Secretary, Rajesh Bhushan ensured about no compromise on the scientific and regulatory protocols and also on the existing healthcare services amid the vaccination drive which will commence from January 16. During a health ministry briefing, he said, “The Centre had been proactive and pre-emptive in addressing the vaccination needs in the country and a task force was set up in May last year to promote indigenous research and development in vaccines, pharmaceuticals and diagnostics.”
Much has been spoken about the vaccines presently, as SII has initiated the shipment of the AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine Covishield across several cities. The Centre had issued orders of 11 million doses of the vaccine which will be provided as Rs 200 for the initial 100 million doses. Adar Poonawalla, SII chief executive officer said the price will later be increased to Rs 1000 per dose.
Alongside, Bharat Biotech is all ready to dispatch its Covid-19 vaccine Covaxin on Tuesday evening from Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Airport. Covaxin, in the third stage of clinical trials, has been developed in India by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and National Institute of Virology (NIV).
In the briefing, VK Paul has appreciated the Indian Medical Association (IMA) which had requested its 3.5 lakh members based in 1800 local branches to participate in Covid-19 vaccination for showcasing its safety and efficacy to the public. He said, “The IMA has decided to accept and support the two indigenously developed vaccines. I would like to thank them for this.”
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