Vaccine (Photo: PTI)
New Delhi: As the state struggles with a shortage of coronavirus vaccines, the center said on Thursday that more than two billion doses would be available in the country in the five months between August and December, enough to sustain the entire population. VK Paul, a member of the NITI Commission, added that the Russian anti-Kovid-19 vaccine, Sputnik V, would be available next week. At a time when domestic supply is not able to meet the huge demand, several states and Union Territories, including Delhi, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Telangana, have decided to tender the world for the purchase of anti-coronavirus vaccine.
Acknowledging the lack of vaccines, Paul said that vaccines are “important but they take time to produce and supply.” We are going through this kind of thing when supply is limited. “That’s why we’ve set priorities,” he told a health ministry briefing. Therefore (when) the Government of India provided free vaccines, its main focus was on at-risk age groups. We have to keep this in mind. Read more: Coronary Vaccination: India surpasses US and China in vaccination, 1 billion people vaccinated in 114 days
However, the official said that by 2020, there will be enough doses of vaccine for the entire population of the country. “More than two billion doses will be given to India and its people in five months,” Paul said. This vaccine is available to everyone. He said that number could reach three billion in the first quarter of next year. He said 21 crore doses of the vaccine are expected to be produced from August to December, including 1.5 million doses of covacin and 550 million doses of covacin.
Also, Biological E will provide 300 million doses, Zydus Cadilla 50 million, Serum Institute of India 200 million doses of NovaVax and India Biotech 10 million doses of Nasal Vaccine, and Genova 6 million doses and Sputnik V 15.6 million doses. Biotech E, Zydus Cadila, Genoa, India Biotech is in various stages of clinical trials of its nasal vaccine.
Regarding the purchase of vaccines from Pfizer, Modarna and Johnson & Johnson, Paul said the government is liaising with these agencies through the Department of Biotechnology and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“We have officially asked if they want to send food to India, can produce in India, we will find partners,” he said. They said they would talk about the availability of the vaccine in the quarter. We have accelerated this process with Moderena, Pfizer and J&J and we hope they will come forward.
“It’s happening at the highest level. We’ve invited them,” he said. “They’re making vaccines here by transferring technology with our companies. Regarding the vaccination campaign, Paul cites the example of the United States, Germany, and France, where the entire population has not yet received a single dose of the vaccine.
The government has already said that India, the world’s fastest growing vaccine country, has injected 1 million vaccine doses in 114 days. Paul also defended the Centre’s immunization policy, which has been criticized by many states. Many opposition-ruled states are opposed to policies that have made it mandatory for them to collect vaccines nationally and internationally. Opposition chief ministers are also demanding free vaccinations for all.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has said that leaving the states to “fight” each other in the international market for the Kovid-19 vaccine is tarnishing India’s image.
In response to such criticism, Paul said, “States want flexibility.” This (vaccine policy) is in the same response. There was also a demand that (dose availability) should also be in the private sector.
“Any vaccine approved by the WHO, FDA can be imported into India,” he said. They can get the import license within two days. Who is stopping? He said that 35.6 crore vaccines have been purchased or are in the process of being procured so far. He said another 1.16 crore additional doses are in the process, which are collected directly by state and private hospitals. “So, in total, 51..6 crore doses are being bought.”
(This is a monitored and auto-generated story from a syndicated news feed, most likely not modified or edited by the latest staff)