Covid19

‘Meeting going on, DCGI to take final call,’ says govt

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A subject expert committee set up by Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) V.G. Somani to vet vaccine proposals, has recommended emergency market approval for Serum Institute of India’s Covishield, according to Mint sources. Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) V.G. Somani will give final nod on approval of a COVID-19 vaccine in India, Union ministry of health and family welfare reported.

The SEC met for the third time in a month to look at data provided by Serum Institute and Bharat Biotech for emergency use licence. Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech had applied for emergency use of their coronavirus vaccines last month. Earlier this week, the expert committee sought more data from both the companies to approve the vaccines.

“Meeting of the SEC is still going on. SEC will make appropriate recommendations to the #DCGI. The final decision will be taken by the DCGI,” the ministry of health and family welfare wrote on Twitter.

Serum Institute of India joined hands with AstraZeneca to manufacture doses of COVID-19 vaccine developed by the University of Oxford. Pune-based drugmaker signed an agreement to produce 1 billion doses of Oxford-AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine for low-and-middle income countries.

Cheaper and easier to distribute than rival vaccines, the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine on average 70% effective, according to the interim data. The world’s biggest producer of vaccines, has already stockpiled about 50 million doses.

India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) could also approve a vaccine locally developed by Bharat Biotech, Reuters reported.

India will soon start a mega COVID-19 vaccination drive in the country. The central government has readied the blueprint of the mega vaccination drive. During the first phase, nearly 30 crore people will receive the jab. At first, the coronavirus vaccine will be offered to healthcare workers, frontline workers and to persons above 50 years of age. Based on the pandemic and its course, people younger than 50 years of age with associated comorbidities will get the vaccine, according to reports.

The COVID Vaccine Intelligence Network (Co-WIN) system — a digitalised platform — will be used to track enlisted beneficiaries for the vaccination and anti-coronavirus vaccines on a real-time basis. Pre-registration must for COVID-19 vaccination.

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