Zydus Cadila’s COVID vaccine to be only given to adults as of now

The health ministry has already placed a purchase order with the Ahmedabad-based firm for one crore doses of the vaccine

Zydus Cadila on November 8 said it had received an order to supply one crore doses of its COVID vaccine to the Indian government at ₹265 per dose | File Photo

Zydus Cadila’s COVID-19 vaccine ZyCov-D will only be administered to adults as of now, sources said on Sunday. 

The health ministry has given the go-ahead to initiate the preparatory work for the inclusion of the indigenously developed, needle-free jab in the COVID inoculation drive and it can be introduced in the programme anytime soon.

The ministry has already placed a purchase order with the Ahmedabad-based firm for one crore doses of the vaccine.

“ZyCov-D, which has been cleared by India’s drug regulator for those aged 12 years and above, will be given only to adults as of now under the national COVID vaccination drive,” an official source said.

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Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Thursday said the government does not want to make haste about administering COVID vaccines to children and any decision in this regard will be taken based on expert opinion.

Also read: Zydus Cadila agrees to slash price of COVID-19 shot

He said children are not being inoculated against COVID-19 on a large scale anywhere in the world, though it has been initiated in some countries in a limited manner.

“About vaccinating the children, we will take a decision based on expert opinion. We have decided to think and evaluate before going ahead with vaccinating children as they are the future of our country and we need to tread with caution in this matter,” Mandaviya had said.

Meanwhile, a comprehensive programme for paediatric immunisation, including developing a priority list of co-morbidities, is being worked out by the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation.

ZyCov-D is the first Covid vaccine cleared by India’s drug regulator for inoculation of those aged 12 and above.

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

For administering ZyCov-D to adults, frontline workers and vaccinators will be provided a brief training for using the needle-free applicator in actual field settings.

At present, every citizen aged above 18 years is eligible for Covid vaccination.

Zydus Cadila on November 8 said it had received an order to supply one crore doses of its COVID vaccine to the Indian government at 265 per dose.

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