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Bharat Biotech’s COVID-19 vaccine COVAXIN likely to get WHO approval this week

New Delhi: The World Health Organisation (WHO) is likely to give its approval for Bharat Biotech’s COVID-19 vaccine, COVAXIN, this week, ANI quoted sources as saying on Monday.

Covaxin has been authorised for emergency use in India and has also been exported to several countries. The WHO nod will allow Bharat Biotech to export its vaccine to more nations and it will also ease international travel for people who have been vaccinated with COVAXIN.

Bharat Biotech’s COVAXIN is one of the three vaccines that are being administered in the country. While the vaccine is 78 per cent effective, some data from advanced research is yet to come.

According to the Bharat Biotech, COVAXIN demonstrated 77.8 per cent vaccine efficacy against symptomatic COVID-19 disease, through evaluation of 130 confirmed cases, with 24 observed in the vaccine group versus 106 in the placebo group.

“The efficacy against severe symptomatic COVID-19 disease is shown to be 93.4 per cent. The efficacy data demonstrates 63.6 per cent protection against asymptomatic COVID-19,” it added.

According to WHO, the Emergency Use Listing (EUL) is a prerequisite for COVAX Facility vaccine supply to other countries. The EUL assesses the quality, safety, and efficacy of covid-19 vaccines, as well as risk management plans and programmatic suitability, such as cold chain requirements.

So far, six vaccines have EUL from the WHO – AstraZeneca-Oxford, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer-BioNTech, Sinopharm and Sinovac.

Meanwhile, India’s cumulative COVID-19 vaccination coverage surpassed 74 crores, of which 53,38,945 vaccine doses were administered in the last 24 hours.

“With the administration of 53,38,945 vaccine doses in the last 24 hours, country’s COVID-19 vaccination coverage surpassed the cumulative figure of 74.38 crores (74,38,37,643) as per provisional reports till 7 am today. This has been achieved through 75,64,949 sessions,” the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) said on Monday.

Of the total, 1,03,64,261 healthcare workers received the first dose and 85,98,485 second vaccine doses; 1,83,37,884 front line workers were administered the first dose and 1,40,44,281 vaccine doses given as the second dose to front line workers.

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