The increase in the facilities of Bharat Biotech and three public sector companies is being supported to improve the production of the Covid-19 Covaxin vaccine, Parliament was informed on Friday.
The Biotechnology Department informed that the increase in facilities of Bharat Biotech and 3 public sector companies (ESP) – Haffkine Biopharmaceutical Corporation Ltd, Indian Immunologicals Ltd; and Bharat Immunologicals Biologicals Corporation Ltd – is supported to increase production of Covaxin, Minister of Health and Family Welfare and Chemicals and Fertilizers Mansukh Mandaviya said in a written response to a question posed to Rajya Sabha.
This is being done as part of the “Covid Suraksha Mission – India’s mission to develop the Covid-19 vaccine,” he added.
Read | Covaxine supply to Bharat Biotech’s Malur and Ankleshwar units to start in September
In addition, the transfer of technology from the production of Covaxin to the Gujarat Covid Vaccine Consortium – comprising Hester Biosciences, OmniBRx Biotechnologies Pvt Ltd and Gujarat Biotechnology Research Center – is facilitated by the Department of Biotechnology, with a view to improving the production of Covaxin in the coming months, says Mandaviya.
“The Department of Health and Family Welfare has provided a 100% advance to domestic vaccine manufacturers for orders placed with them. These funds can be used by these manufacturers to increase their capacities, ”he added.
The government has also provided financial assistance to one of the vaccine manufacturers, Biological E, for the “risky manufacture” of the Covid-19 vaccine, the minister said.
Read also | IIL could start delivering 20 lakh doses of Covaxin by September, says NITI Aayog
In addition, the Central Drug Standards and Control Organization (CDSCO) has set up a system for prompt processing of requests for clinical trials and approval of Covid-19 vaccines, he added.
The government is also providing 15-day advance visibility on vaccine availability to States / UTs with advice to prepare and publish in advance the plan of vaccination centers (CVCs) by district and Covid-19, Mandaviya said.
It is expected that adequate amounts of Covid-19 vaccine will be available between January 2021 and December 2021, to vaccinate eligible beneficiaries aged 18 and over, he added.