Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday reviewed India’s preparations for vaccinating its vast population against the coronavirus disease, once a vaccine becomes available. Vaccination must be affordable and universal, Modi said. "Important issues related to progress of vaccine development, regulatory approvals and procurement were discussed," Modi wrote on Twitter.
"Reviewed various issues like prioritisation of population groups, reaching out to healthcare workers, cold-chain Infrastructure augmentation, adding vaccinators, and tech platform for vaccine roll-out, the prime minister added.
Five vaccine candidates are at the different stages of trials in India. Covaxin by Bharat Biotech and Covishield, developed by the University of Oxford have already started the phase III clinical trial. ZyCoV-D by Zydus Cadila is in the phase II clinical trial in the country. Dr Reddy's Laboratories will soon start phase II clinical trials of the Russian COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V in India.
India’s experience in conducting elections and handling disaster management should be put to use in managing COVID-19 vaccine delivery and administration and experts in all necessary domains, officials at all levels, Modi said earlier.
The Prime Minister further directed that keeping in view the geographical span and diversity of the country, the access to the vaccine should be ensured speedily, the statement mentioned.