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When it comes to the Covid-19 vaccine, India has shown its capacity to be a global-scale manufacturer and also an innovator, said Soumya Swaminathan, World Health Organization’s Chief Scientist.
While addressing the Global Bio-India 2021, Swaminathan observed that the fight against the pandemic is at a very critical junction now, as cases have suddenly gone up, particularly in Europe and America.
There are many uncertainties now, especially on the different variants of the virus, she noted.
"India has shown the capacity to be a manufacturer at the global scale and also be an innovator when it came to vaccine development. There is a huge amount of scope to study the impact of vaccines, which needs to be thought-through by a very coordinated approach," she said.
As many as 30 vaccines are at different stages of development in India. Covaxin, developed indigenously by Biotech, and Covishield, developed by Oxford-AstraZeneca and being manufactured at Serum Institute of India, are already in use in the country.
The vaccine candidates of Zydus Cadila and Russia's Sputnik V are in phase 3 of the human clinical trials. Sputnik V, which is being manufactured by Reddy's Laboratories in India, has initiated the process for Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) with the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI).
India has supplied vaccines to several nations while many others have also placed orders for the same.
Vinod Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog lauded the efforts of the scientific community and said the speed with which the solutions during the pandemic appeared was phenomenal.
“The stories of the development of vaccines are amazing examples of how time can be compressed and scientific mobilisation can be initiated. The intent to have a global footprint in the manufacturing sector when it came to the Covid-19 vaccine was path-breaking and something to be proud of.
“We have realised that we have the potential to deliver in a speedy manner as we did for vaccine distribution,” he said.
The three-day Global Bio-India 2021 was inaugurated Monday by Harsh Vardhan, the minister of Science & Technology, and Health & Family Welfare.
With PTI Inputs
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