September 27, 2021

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India plans COVID-19 vaccine for children

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 Director of ICMR’s National Institute of Virology (Pune) Priya Abraham says India is likely to have indigenous COVID-19 vaccine for children.

Director of Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)’s National Institute of Virology (Pune) Priya Abraham said India was likely to have its indigenous COVID-19 vaccine for children by September.

Abraham’s remarks came amid the ongoing phase II and III trials of Covaxin for the 2-18 age group.

“Hopefully, the results (of the trials) are going to be available very soon.

“The results will be presented to the regulators. So, by September or just after it, we may have COVID-19 vaccines for children,’’ Abraham said in an interview to India Science, an OTT channel of the science and technology department.

ICMR and Hyderabad-based vaccine manufacturer Bharat Biotech co-developed Covaxin, India’s first indigenous COVID-19 vaccine.

Abraham told the channel that apart from Covaxin, Zydus Cadila’s vaccine trial was also going on.

“This can also be applied for children and will be made available.’’

Abraham also said studies on booster doses have been going on overseas and at least seven different vaccines have been tried for it.

“Now, WHO (World Health Organisation) has put a stop to it till more countries catch up with vaccination.

“This is because there is an alarming vaccine gap between high-income and low-income countries. But, in future, recommendations for boosters will definitely come.’’

The vaccination program against COVID-19 started in India on Jan. 16 for people above 18 years.

With more than seven months into the drive, so far only 9 per cent of the country’s adult population has been fully vaccinated, the figures compiled by independent source “Our World in Data’’ showed.

The Indian government aims to vaccinate the entire population above 18 years of age by the end of this year.

Experts say India needs to administer 10 million doses a day to achieve its aim of inoculating the adult population by December. (Xinhua/NAN) (www.nannews.ng)

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