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Committee on 'How to Distribute' Covid vaccines Meets Today

An expert committee headed by NITI Aayog member VK Paul will meet on August 12 to discuss and find a road map on the procurement, distribution and the logistics of Covid-19 vaccine.

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An expert committee headed by NITI Aayog member VK Paul will meet on August 12 to consider the logistics and ethical aspects of procuring and administering the COVID-19 vaccine. This comes in the backdrop of Russia on Tuesday claiming that it has developed the world's first covid vaccine offering "sustainable immunity" against the coronavirus.

The VK Paul committee on vaccine administration is expected to engage with all stakeholders like the state governments, vaccine manufacturers, experts etc. and finalize the terms of reference for the selection of suitable vaccines, procurement and delivery and prioritising groups to administer them.

"It will also look into aspects related to logistics like cold chain and inventory, arrangement of resources for procuring the vaccine and issues of equity. This expert group will continue its engagement with all state governments and vaccine manufacturers in India," said Health Ministry Secretary Rajesh Bhushan at a press briefing on August 11.

As is widely reported, there are three vaccines currently under different stages of human clinical trials in the country.

The phase-1 and 2 human clinical trials of two of them, developed locally by Bharat Biotech, in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research, and Zydus Cadila Ltd, are going on.

The Serum Institute of India has been permitted for conducting Phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of the third vaccine candidate developed by the Oxford University. The Pune-based institute has partnered with AstraZeneca for manufacturing it. The Oxford vaccine is also undergoing final-phase-3 trial in Brazil.

The Serum Institute has said it has entered into a new partnership with international vaccine alliance Gavi and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to accelerate manufacturing and delivery of up to 100 million doses of vaccines for India and other low and middle-income countries. 

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COVID-19 Vaccine pharma How to Distribute Committee