In a major boost for the country's fights against Coronavirus, India currently has three vaccines in the clinical trial stage, said Professor Balram Bhargava, DG, ICMR. Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan on Sunday had said that no date has been fixed for the launch of the vaccine in the country and it may be ready by the first quarter of next year.
The three vaccines that are in the clinical trial are -
Stating that the government is taking full precautions, the health minister interacted with his social media followers on the Sunday Samvad platform. He further said that the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 is drawing up a detailed strategy on how to immunize the majority of the population. Chairmanship of Dr. V K Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog is also extending its full support.
He said issues like vaccine security, cost, equity, cold-chain requirements, and production timelines are also being discussed intensely. Health Minister assured the vaccine will be first made available to those who need it the most, irrespective of their paying capacity.
Oxford University and Serum Institute of India's COVID-19 vaccine candidate being developed in collaboration with AstraZeneca pharmaceutical were halted after a volunteer developed an illness. On Saturday, Oxford University announced that the trials will be resumed while adding that with 18,000 test cases, some of the volunteers are bound to get unwell. In India, the vaccine trials haven't been resumed yet since the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) order Serum Institute of India to halt trials and the recruitment of volunteers for the trials. While on the other hand, the COVID-19 vaccine candidate of Bharat Biotech 'Covaxin' had successful animal trials.