US pharmaceutical major Novavax and British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has announced that they have decided to tie up with the Serum Institute of India for ramping-up the production of Covid-19 vaccines.
Serum Institute is the largest vaccine producer in the world, headquartered in Pune of Maharashtra.
It has been producing a vaccine developed by the Oxford University and AstraZeneca which is named as Covidshield. The vaccine got authorization from the World Health Organization (WHO) in the month of January for its emergency use and now approved for its supply to the low and middle-class countries of the world.
“Together with our partner, the Serum Institute of India, we plan to supply over 300 million doses to 145 countries through COVAX in the first half of 2021 as part of our global and equitable access pledge,” said the president of AstraZeneca, Ruud Dobber.
“The majority of this supply will go to low and middle-income countries,” Dobber told members of the US House Energy and Commerce Committee’s oversight and investigations subcommittee during a Congressional hearing on ‘Pathway to Protection: Expanding Availability of Covid-19 Vaccines’ on Tuesday.
The hearing was held to take a stock of efforts made by manufacturers for ramping up the production of vaccine in US.
The president also told the agreement between the Astrazenca and the US government asks for the supply of 300 million doses of vaccine and the cost of these doses and agreement together gives no profit to the Company.
“Studies conducted today indicated our vaccine is well tolerated and effective. And just this week, we were encouraged to see the first real world evidence from over 5.4 million subjects in Scotland demonstrating a risk reduction of Covid-19 related hospitalisations by 94 per cent after the first dose of our vaccine,” asserted Dobber.
The executive vice-president of Novavax also agreed with Ruud Dobber and showed confidence in the deal amongst the members in the hearing.
Covidshield is the reasonable priced vaccine among the other vaccines in use like of Moderna and Pfizer-BioNtech. Moreover, it does not need any ultra low-temperature facilities for its storage like all other vaccines.