New Delhi: Adding to a growing portfolio of vaccines validated for the prevention of COVID-19, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has granted emergency use listing (EUL) to COVAXIN developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech.
The Technical Advisory Group, convened by the UN health agency, determined that the Covaxin meets WHO standards for protection against coroanvirus disease (Covid-19) and the benefit of the vaccine far outweighs risks.
The Technical Advisory Group for Emergency Use Listing is an independent advisory group that provides a recommendation to WHO whether an unlicensed vaccine can be recommended for emergency use under the EUL procedure, and if so, under what conditions.
The EUL procedure assesses the suitability of novel health products during public health emergencies. The aim is to make medicines, vaccines & diagnostics available as rapidly as possible while adhering to stringent criteria of safety, efficacy & quality
Covaxin was found to have 78% efficacy against COVID-19 of any severity, 14 or more days after the second dose, and is extremely suitable for low- and middle-income countries due to easy storage requirements.
Covaxin vaccine was also reviewed by WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE), and recommended use of this vaccine in two doses, with a dose interval of four weeks, in all age groups 18 and above, WHO said in a series of tweets.
“Available data on vaccination of pregnant women with the #Covaxin vaccine are insufficient to assess vaccine safety or efficacy in pregnancy; studies in pregnant women are planned, including a pregnancy sub-study and a pregnancy registry,” the WHO added.
Many countries like Guyana, Iran, Mauritius, Mexico, Nepal, Paraguay, the Philipines, Zimbabwe, Australia, Oman, Sri Lanka, Estonia, Greece have approved Covaxin. The emergency use listing of Covaxin will now open the door of many countries, who have been awaiting WHO’s nod, for Indians vaccinated with Covaxin.