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Coronavirus vaccine India: UK approves Oxford vaccine, raising hopes for India rollout | India News


NEW DELHI: #In a big boost for the war against #Covid-19, #Britain on #Wednesday authorised emergency use of the #Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, making it the first country to approve the vaccine that is expected to be the mainstay of #India’s inoculation programme early in 2021.
The #Indian regulator is expected to follow suit soon, but the subject expert committee that met on #Wednesday sought more data relating to the vaccine’s immunogenicity, which will mean the emergency-use approval may take a few more days. The committee is set to meet next on #Friday, raising hopes of a vaccine rollout in early #January.
The committee will analyse the updated data submitted by #Serum #Institute of #India and also the indigenous vaccine candidate of #Bharat #Biotech. SII has said it has already stockpiled 40-50 million shots of #Covishield and is augmenting this number every week.
#Reports said #Covishield could become the most widely used shot given its moderate pricing of $3 to $4 a dose and that it can be transported and stored in normal refrigerators for several weeks.
#Pfizer-BioNTech requires freezers at minus 70° while #Moderna’s needs minus 20°, and they both cost more. The UK authorities have decided to opt for giving as many single shots as they can with the interval between shots set at between 4 to 12 weeks in a bid to reach the widest population. The plan is based on #Covishield shots reporting higher efficacy in enlarged intervals.
#As regards the #Indian assessment, an official said, “The committee has to go through the data based on which the company has received an approval in the UK. #In a situation like this, the regulator will have to ensure that the data submitted in #India is co-relatable with the global data.” “The additional data presented by SII and #Bharat #Biotech was perused and analysed by the SEC. The analysis of the additional data and information is going on. SEC will convene again on #January 1,” the government said.
The developments indicate #India’s vaccination drive will roll out early #January, aiming to inoculate around 30 crore people in the first phase by #July.
The OAZ vaccine becomes the second shot to be authorised for use in the UK after the #Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine became first in the world to get authorisation on #December 2. The UK government has pre-ordered 100 million doses, enough to vaccinate 50 million people in a two-shot regime. #This would cover entire UK population, when combined with #Pfizer vaccine.
The UK regulator recommends two standard doses 4 to 12 weeks apart of the #Oxford vaccine, which will provide 70% efficacy. “Some people got second doses at different time intervals and it showed effectiveness was high, up to 80%, when there was a three-month interval,” explained #Sir #Munir #Pirmohamed, chair of the #Commission on #Human #Medicine expert working group.



[ source link ]
https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/uk-approves-oxford-vaccine-raising-hopes-for-india-rollout/articleshow/80036835.cms

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