New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: India purchased 1 crore doses of ZyCoV-D which is Zydus Cadila's COVID-19 three-dose needle-free vaccine. As per reports, the vaccination has been given a go-ahead from the Union Health Ministry under country's vaccination drive. ZyCoV-D is the first vaccine cleared by India's drug regulator for inoculation of those aged 12 years and above.

Zydus Cadila is set to make 1 crore doses of ZyCoV-D available per month and the officials of the firm have conveyed the same to the ministry. 

An official source told PTI, "The Centre has already placed a purchase order with Zydus Cadila for supply of one crore doses of ZyCoV-D, each costing around Rs 358 excluding taxes, at the earliest. This price includes the cost of a disposable painless jet applicator which has to be used for administering each dose."

The source further added, "The vaccine in all probability will be given to adults initially because of limited production capacity."

Meanwhile, since it is a needle-free vaccine, medical healthcare workers will be undergoing a brief training on how to give the vaccination using the needle-free pharma jet. In this vaccination, the three doses of ZyCoV-D will be given in the gap of 28 days with each dose comprising a shot in both arms.

The drug regulator granted the emergency use authorization for ZyCoV-D on August 20. 

Meanwhile, a comprehensive programme for paediatric immunisation including developing a priority list of comorbidities is being worked out by the NTAGI (National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation) for the launch of ZyCoV-D and Covaxin.

As for the emergency use approval for Bharat Biotech's Covaxin in the 2 to 18 years age group by the Drugs Controller General of India, it is under expert opinion and evaluation, official sources said.

The Subject Expert Committee (SEC) on COVID-19 of the Central Drug Authority on October 12 had recommended granting emergency use authorisation to Covaxin for children and adolescents in the 2 to 18 years age group with certain conditions.

At present, every citizen who is 18 years or above is eligible for the vaccination drive.

With PTI inputs

Posted By: Sanyukta Baijal