Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid a visit to pharma major Zydus Cadila at Zydus Biotech Park in Ahmedabad to review the development of its coronavirus vaccine candidate ZyCOV-D. The PM will later visit Bharat Biotech in Hyderabad and Serum Institute of India in Pune to review their Covid-19 vaccine development and manufacturing process.
In a Tweet earlier, the PMO informed that Modi’s visit will help him in getting first hand perspective of the preparations, challenges and roadmap in India’s endeavour to vaccinate its citizens. During his visit to three facilities, the prime minister will also hold discussions with scientists. He will spend around one hour at Bharat Biotech whose vaccine candidate Covaxin is undergoing Phase-3 trials. At around 4: 30 PM, he will pay a visit to Serum Institute of Indian in Pune to review its vaccine candidate being Manufactured in collaboration with Oxford University and Astrazeneca. He will fly back to Delhi later in the evening.
The AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine is currently the front runner in the race for vaccine followed by Bharat Biotech’s vaccine candidate. The Phase-3 trials of both the vaccines are currently on in India. Earlier, the company had announced that its Phase-3 trials results conducted in other countries showed that effectiveness of vaccine was 90% in preventing coronavirus. For achieving this, an individual will to take half dose of the vaccine followed by full dose. The vaccine showed 62% effectiveness in those individuals who took two full shots.
However, various concerns had cropped up with the way these results were achieved. Astrazeneca had admitted that a manufacturing had occurred due to which some volunteers received a lower dosage of the vaccine than others. Surprisingly, these individuals seemed better protected than those who received the full doses.
India is currently the second worst affected country in the world after the United States.