Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed India's vaccination strategy in a key meeting with the concerned officials, touching upon important aspects of COVID vaccine delivery, distribution and administration. Appreciating the efforts of scientists, Pharma companies, innovators and academicians to develop vaccines, Modi directed that every effort should be made to facilitate the research, development and manufacturing of the vaccine.
"Held a meeting to review India's vaccination strategy and the way forward. Important issues related to the progress of vaccine development, regulatory approvals and procurement were discussed," PM Modi tweeted.
Modi also reviewed "various issues like prioritization of population groups, reaching out to healthcare workers, cold-chain Infrastructure augmentation, adding vaccinators and tech platforms for vaccine roll-out."
COVID vaccine for India
The meeting comes shortly after Oxford University announced that its vaccines will be ready to be rolled out in Feb 2021. US Pharma Pfizer also announced vaccine with 95 percent efficacy in final 3 phases. There are five vaccines in advanced stages of development in India, four of which are in phase 2/3 and one is in phase 1/2. The government also said that countries such as Bangladesh, Myanmar, Qatar, Bhutan, Switzerland, Bahrain, Austria and South Korea – have expressed interest in partnering for vaccine development of Indian vaccines and use.
In efforts to administer the vaccine at the earliest, database of healthcare and frontline workers is being prepared along with augmentation of cold storage facilities and procurement of syringes. There's also a digital platform under development for vaccine administration.
To further these efforts, the government provided Rs 900 crore funding to support in the COVID-19 vaccine R&D and PM Modi also laid out a plan for speedy regulatory clearances and timely procurement.