“Hopeful India will get COVID-19 vaccine nod by December end or early January”


NEW DELHI: Director of the All Indian Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Dr Randeep Guleria has said that he is hopeful of that by the end of this month or early next month, India will get emergency use authorisation for a coronavirus vaccine.

In an interview with ANI, Dr Guleria, who is also a member of the national task force on Covid-19 management stated: “In India, we now have a vaccine which is in the final phase of the trial. Both the Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech vaccines are in their phase three trials. So we are very hopeful that by the end of this month or early next month, we should get the emergency use authorisation from the Indian regulatory authorities to start giving the vaccine to the public.”

The Covid vaccine developed by American pharma giant Pfizer, was cleared by the United Kingdom on Wednesday and will be rolled out to the public early next week.

While stressing on Indian vaccines and their authorisation Dr Guleria stated that “this is great news that one vaccine has finally being floored and within the span of one year. This is a big boost to all the vaccine manufacturers. Now there are good chances of the vaccine being available.”

The AIIMS director said that there is good data available that the vaccines are safe. “70,000-80,000 volunteers were tested with the Covid-19 vaccine and apart from one case in Chennai, no significant adverse effects were seen on the volunteers. The data showed that in the short term, the vaccine is safe,” he said.

On the distribution of vaccine, Dr Guleria said “work is going on at war-footing both at the centre and the state level for vaccine distribution plan in terms of maintaining the cold chain, having appropriate storehouses available, developing strategy, training vaccinators and availability of syringes.”

Dr Guleria said that in the beginning as vaccines won’t be available in sufficient doses to give everyone, the Centre is working on adopting strategies to prioritise the list. 

“We need a priority list to see that we vaccinate those who have high chances of dying due to Covid-19. Elderly, people with comorbidities and front line workers should be vaccinated first.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has over the past week visited vaccine manufacturing facitilites in three cities and held multiple meetings with all stakeholders to review efforts to create and distribute a coronavirus vaccine.

Covid-19 cases reached to 95,34,965, including 4,22,943 active cases and 89,73,373 recoveries. As many as 526 new fatalities were reported escalating the death toll to 1,38,648 on Thursday. (ANI)