Prioritisation has to be done on criteria for COVID-19 vaccination, says Dr VK Paul

Amid claims of various state governments that it would provide free Covid-19 vaccinations, the Union government’s expert group on vaccines on Tuesday said that they should wait for a clearer picture to emerge on vaccine prioritisation.
“We’ve requested state governments to wait for an overall picture to become clear ad to take a national approach towards engaging companies, and deciding the criteria for the vaccine. Prioritisation has to be done,” Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog and chairperson of Covid-19 taskforce committee said on Tuesday while addressing a Union Health Ministry’s press conference.

He also said that at present there is no vaccine in the world and that it is fortunate that trials are being done on Indian soil.
“We are working to look at our approach to vaccine implementation. As and when vaccines are available, and in that regard, the access to vaccines will be in such a way that vaccine supply is not unlimited. Prioritisation has to be done. The prioritisation principles will be determined on the basis of availability of the vaccine, who should be getting that vaccine,” he stated.

Dr Paul added that discussions in the committee of Union Government are being conducted and blueprints are being finalized and added that committee and oversee that in order to deliver the vaccine to priority groups, there will be no problems in terms of resources.

Dr Balram Bhargava, Director General (DG ) of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) who was also present in the media meet informed that currently, three vaccines are in different stages of trial in India.
“There are three vaccine candidates in different stages of clinical testing- Covaxin has got approval for phase III trials, Cadila also progressing with phase-II trials & Serum is completing phase 2b trial and has an ongoing trial in Brazil, South Africa, and the US,” said Dr Bhargava. 


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