India will soon be sending off doses of its indigenous vaccine, Covaxin to the neighbouring countries, an office memorandum G.K Pillai, undersecretary to the Government of India indicates.
The communication was to the Ministry of External Affairs and a copy of the same has been marked to Dr Krishna Ella, CMD, Bharat Biotech International Limited.
In the memorandum, the undersecretary is alluding to a meeting of the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 (NEGVAC) which was convened by Secretary Department of Pharmaceuticals and Foreign Secretary, MEA on January 15. The officials have agreed that they will be providing a grant in aid as a goodwill gesture by sending 8.1 lakh doses of Covaxin to different countries.
Post January 22, MEA will start the process of procurement from Bharat Biotech, keeping in mind India’s own 'programmatic priorities of the on-going Covid-19 inoculation drive.’
“This is purely a goodwill gesture and grant in aid,” reads the memorandum. However, at the time of filing this report, it was unclear which countries will get the aid.
COVAXIN is India’s indigenous Covid-19 vaccine, developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech. The inactivated vaccine has been developed in cooperation with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)-National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune. It is presented in multi-dose vials and can be stored at a temperature of 2-8-degree Celsius.
The Phase III human trials of COVAXIN began in mid-November and are currently ongoing in 26,000 volunteers across India. As per the developers, the efficacy data is expected by March.