Covid-19 vaccine: India considering phase-III trials in partner countries, says Jaishankar

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 06, 2020

Looking forward to research collaboration in vaccine development, possible joint production

India is on track for the development and trial of Covid-19 vaccines and is exploring the possibility of conducting phase-III clinical trials in some partner countries, teaming up for research collaboration and looking at possible joint production, Minister for External Affairs S Jaishankar has said.

“We are exploring the possibility of conducting phase-III trials in a few of our partner countries. We are also looking forward to research collaboration in the field of vaccine development. Based on willingness, we may also go for joint production of vaccines in some countries,” Jaishankar said at a briefing session on Covid-19 related issues for diplomatic missions and international organisations on Friday.

“We are on track on the development and trial of vaccines,” he added.

India already conducted online training sessions for nearly 90 participants from eight neighbouring countries for developing capacity in clinical trials and clinical practices, including Bangladesh and Myanmar. Based on demand, more such training courses can be conducted, the Minister said.

Several countries have been approaching India for receiving vaccine supply, and the country is willing to help. “I reiterate our Prime Minister’s commitment that India’s vaccine production and delivery capacity will be used to help all humanity in fighting this crisis. India will also help interested countries in enhancing their cold chain and storage capacities for the delivery of vaccines,” Jaishankar said.

Drop in infection rate

Due to increase in testing numbers, contact tracing, effective isolation protocol, efficient use of hospital beds, increased availability of medical equipment, testing kits and sustained public awareness campaign, India’s recovery rate is now 91.96 per cent (as on November 3) and case fatality rate has dropped to 1.49 per cent. “With progressively falling positivity rate, testing has worked as an effective tool to limit the spread of infection,” he said.

In India, the daily caseload has reduced to below 50,000 from around 1,00,000 a few weeks ago, the Minister added.

Beximco deal

On the deal signed by Bangladesh’s Beximco Pharmaceuticals and Serum Institute of India on Thursday to buy 30 million doses of a potential vaccine, MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said that it was essentially a commercial agreement between manufacturer and buyers.

“We are of course supportive of supplies of medicines, particularly vaccines, to all friendly countries and priority is given to our neighbouring countries. This is dependent upon availability, needs and supplies,” Srivastava said.

Published on November 06, 2020

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