New Delhi | ANI: National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI) on Friday approved Serum Institute of India's Covovax COVID-19 vaccine for the age group 12-17, said sources.

This comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi stressed vaccination for all eligible children at the earliest with "special campaigns" in schools is a priority for the Government.

However, no decision has been taken by NTAGI on vaccinating 5 to 12-year-old kids against COVID19, said sources

Covovax has already been approved by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for children above 12 years of age, but its administration has not been allowed yet.

Earlier this month in an Exclusive Interview with ANI, Serum Institute of India (SII) CEO Adar Poonawalla said, "Covovax will be used for children. It has been approved by DCGI and we're waiting for the Government of India to allow us to put it on the CoWIN app to make it available to everyone."

When asked about the mix-and-match trials of COVID vaccines such that Covovax is used as a booster, Poonawalla earlier said that SII has been asked to conduct a study on that.

"We will do that trial. Covovax, in about two or three months, can also be made available as a booster. But at the moment, it is approved for children of the age of 12 and above," he added. Adar Poonawala also said that Serum has exported Covovax in around 40 million doses to European countries to Australia and Covovax is the first Covid vaccine made in India and sold in Europe.

"We have already exported around 40 million doses to European countries to Australia. You know, and this is actually the first time a vaccine made in India is being sold in Europe."

He further said, "So it's indeed a very important milestone. We hope that in the future other vaccines made in India will also be accepted and used in Europe. So that's the current situation."

Posted By: Sugandha Jha