Bangalore Airport staff transfers cartons containing Covishield vaccine vials developed at the Indian Serum Institute in Bangalore, India on January 12, 2021.
Stringer | Xinhuanet Getty Images
Starting Saturday, India is preparing for one of the world’s largest mass vaccination campaigns.
South Asian countries plan to vaccinate about 300 million people with Covid-1
Air India has already started delivering the first dose of vaccines to other major cities such as Delhi and Kolkata, Ahmedabad and the technology center Bangalore, tweeting on Twitter earlier this week.
The focus of the filming will be given to healthcare and other frontline workers (estimated 30 million people). Followed by people over 50 and other young high-risk individuals.
The launch will involve close cooperation between the central government and the states.
India has also developed a digital portal called Co-WIN Vaccine Delivery Management System. According to the Ministry of Health, it will provide real-time information on “vaccine inventory, storage temperature and personalized tracking of beneficiaries”.
Eurasia Group South Asia analyst Akhil Bery wrote in a report this week: “India’s expertise in vaccine production and experience in mass immunization activities The’first phase’ of vaccination starting this weekend is well prepared.”
He added: “India has a long history of immunization campaigns, including a general immunization program that vaccinates 55 million vaccines each year, and will rely on this expertise to distribute coronavirus vaccines.”
India’s drug regulatory agency has approved restrictions on the use of two coronavirus vaccines in emergency situations, and the two vaccines will be delivered to various vaccination centers by Saturday.
One of them is a vaccine developed by the British-Swedish company AstraZeneca and Oxford University. It is produced domestically by the Serum Institute of India (SII) and is called Covishield locally.
Another vaccine called Covaxin is It was developed domestically by India’s Bharat Biotechnology Company in cooperation with the state-run Indian Medical Research Council. As clinical trials continued, it was granted emergency use authorization.
According to reports, Covaxin’s approval was criticized because the regulator approved the green light shortly after asking Bharat Biotech to conduct more analysis.
The Minister of Health of India said on Tuesday that the Indian government has signed a purchase agreement to purchase 11 million doses of Covishield at a price of 200 Indian rupees (US$2.74) per dose. For 5.5 million doses of Covaxin, the average cost per injection is 206 rupees, which may be cheaper than the price in the private market.
Several other drug candidates, including the second domestic vaccine produced by Zydus Cadila, are undergoing clinical trials.
India currently reports more than 10.5 million coronavirus cases, second only to the United States. According to data from Johns Hopkins University, more than 151,000 people in India have died of Covid-19. But daily reported figures show that the number of active infection cases is declining.
The largest country in South Asia is also the largest vaccine producer in the world. It is said that the vaccine produced accounts for about 60% of global sales.
Therefore, the Covid vaccine production in India is expected to play an important role in the global immune drive against the disease.
Berry of the Eurasian Group said that although the government is optimistic, two important risks may slow the vaccination campaign.
He said: “First, even in the best circumstances, vaccine production capacity will be limited.” He added that if local vaccine manufacturers cannot produce the 600 million doses needed to vaccinate the initial 300 million people, then “ India’s immunization schedule-its vaccine exports to other countries may be greatly delayed.”
Berry said that the second risk is that India’s vaccine campaign will rely heavily on the state government. “The capabilities and expertise of state governments vary greatly.” “There is a need for effective coordination between the central government and state governments. Di’s strengths (Prime Minister Narendra).”