The Centre on Friday approved Bharat Biotech's needle-free intranasal Covid vaccine for booster dose, said an official source, clearing the way for the vaccination through Co-Win from today onwards in private centres.

The nassal vaccine has been approved for those aged above 18 years. The vaccine will be available in the private hospitals for booster dose in the initial phase.

Covid cases on rise
File photo: People not wearing masks at Lajpat Nagar market.IANS

The source said that the nasal vaccine will be used as a heterologous booster among the eligible population. The intranasal Covid vaccine is also expected to be introduced in the Covid-19 vaccination program from Friday, said the source.

Those who have taken Covishield and Covaxin can take the nasal vaccine as a heterologous booster dose. The needle-free vaccine is available at private vaccination centres and appointment can be done on the Co-WIN platform from Friday evening onwards, official sources said.

India's first intranasal Covid vaccine by Bharat Biotech gets DCGI approval

The nasal vaccine -- BBV154, or iNCOVACC -- received approval of the Drugs Controller General of India in November 2022 for restricted use in an emergency situation for those above 18 as a booster dose.

Meanwhile, India on Friday reported 163 fresh Covid-19 cases along with nine deaths have also been reported in the country. The number of active coronavirus cases declined to 3,380.

(With inputs from IANS)