The recommendation of an expert panel on Covid to increase the gap between Covishield doses was made based on scientific evidence in a transparent manner, the government informed Rajya Sabha on Tuesday. No dissent was raised by any member in the meeting of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI) regarding the recommendation, Minister of State for Health Bharati Pravin Pawar said in a written reply.
Responding to a question, Pawar said the COVID Working Group of NTAGI recommended extension of the gap between the first and second doses of Covishield vaccine to 12-16 weeks based on available scientific evidence particularly from the UK as well as WHO global guidance.
This recommendation has been considered and also recommended by the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for COVID-19 (NEGVAC).
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has accepted this recommendation for extension of the gap between the first and second doses of Covishield vaccine to 12-16 weeks.
Responding to another question on whether the government is aware that three of the 14 members of the NTAGI have said that the body did not have enough data to make such a recommendation, Pawar said, “The relevant recommendation of the Covid working group of NTAGI to increase the gap between Covishield doses has been taken based on scientific evidence in a transparent manner. No dissent was raised by any member in the said meeting of NTAGI regarding the said recommendation." .