03 DECEMBER 2020
UK APPROVED COVID-19 VACCINE
The UK became the first country to approve the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the British regulator, declared that the vaccine offers protection of up to 95 per cent and safe to be used against Covid-19.
The MHRA is the UK’s independent regulator recognised globally and the vaccine will be available in the UK from next week.
The American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech concluded phase-3 study, meeting all primary efficacy tests last month and have ordered up to 40 million doses of vaccine to be used for 20 million high priority categories of people with two shots each.
In India, the Pfizer-BionTech vaccine will be more expensive as it poses a difficulty for the storage as the vaccine needs to be kept at a temperature of minus 70 degrees Celsius.
The indigenous vaccine from Bharat Biotech in Hyderabad in collaboration with ICMR and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine by Serum Institute of India, Pune could be the best bet in the country and will be launching soon.
On 28 November 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Sirum Institute in Pune, Zydus Biotech Park in Ahmedabad and Bharath Biotech in Hyderabad to review the vaccine development and manufacturing process in the country.
At the Serum Institute of India plant, the Prime Minister reviewed all details of the vaccine including the launch, production and distribution process of the vaccine CIVISHIELD by the global pharma giant AstraZeneca and Oxford University in partnership with SII, Pune.
Bharath Biotech International Limited, Hyderabad has also undertaken development and manufacturing of Covaxin in collaboration with ICMR. The Phase – III clinical trials of the Covaxin are underway involving 25 thousand volunteers in 22 states all over the country.
The Zydus Cadila Pharmaceuticals in Ahmedabad has completed Phase-I clinical trials of its vaccine ZyKoV-D. The company has already started Phase –II trials.