The Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the importance of global collaboration in vaccine research and development, according to Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers and Health and Family Welfare. “As we navigate this once-in-a-century public health crisis, we realise the importance of research to accelerate vaccine development, particularly for emerging pathogens,” he said.

He said international cooperation was essential to advance vaccine development for emerging pathogens. “The G20 can serve as a vital platform to facilitate collaboration between governments, research organisations, pharmaceutical companies, and other stakeholders,” he said.

The minister addressed virtually the global vaccine research collaborative discussion on the theme ‘Vaccine Research and Development: Building Consensus for Future Health Emergencies Prevention, Preparedness, and Response’. The meeting was held on the sidelines of the third G20 Health Working Group Meeting here on Saturday.

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Stressing on the need for a global vaccine research collaborative, S Aparna, Secretary, Department of Pharmaceuticals, said that pointed out that some countries received Covid vaccines 18 months after they were ready. “The idea behind the collaborative is to address this gap and enable equitable access to vaccines at the global stage,” a Press Information Bureau statement said, quoting the official.

Working group meeting

This event set the tone for the discussions leading up to the third G20 Health Working Group meeting, which will begin on June 4 here. 

Lav Agarwal, Additional Secretary, Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, said that Hyderabad would host three-day Health Working Group meeting from June 4 to 6 with a focus on collaboration on research and development in Medical Counter Measures (MCMs). 

Apart from representatives from G20 countries, the event would have be attended by 10 other countries and 22 global organisations.