New Delhi – Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Tuesday said that approval for Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech’s COVID-19 vaccine Covaxin will be given on the basis of the meeting which will be convened by the World Health Organization (WHO) today.
“WHO has a system in which there is a technical committee which has approved it (Covaxin) while the other committee is meeting today. The approval for Covaxin will be given on the basis of today’s meeting,” said Union Health Minister during a press briefing here.
Earlier this month, WHO chief scientist Dr Soumya Swaminathan had said that WHO’s technical advisory group will meet on October 26 to consider emergency use listing (EUL) for Covaxin.
The WHO last week had said a vaccine recommended by it for emergency use must be evaluated thoroughly.
“We are aware that many people are waiting for WHO’s recommendation for Covaxin to be included in the COVID19 Emergency Use Listing, but we cannot cut corners – before recommending a product for emergency use, we must evaluate it thoroughly to make sure it is safe and effective,” the organisation had said.
The WHO had said that the timeframe for the WHO Emergency Use Listing procedure depends on how quickly a company producing the vaccine is able to provide the required data.
“The timeframe for the WHO Emergency Use Listing procedure is dependent on how quickly a company producing the vaccine is able to provide the data required for WHO to evaluate the vaccine’s quality, safety, efficacy and its suitability for low- and middle-income countries,” it said.
Bharat Biotech has been submitting data to WHO on a rolling basis and submitted additional information at WHO’s request on September 27.
Covaxin, India’s first indigenous COVID-19 vaccine, has been developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).