The pharma giant behind India’s indigenous Covid-19 vaccine Covaxin, Bharat Biotech, is working to make the vaccine available for children.
In this connection, an expert panel under the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation is scheduled to meet Bharat Biotech and decide on its paediatric Covid vaccine dose.
Bharat Biotech has a plan up its sleeve to conduct clinical trials on children aged between 2 and 12 years of age. It has submitted a proposal to that effect to the Drug Controller General India. If successful, the jab will be made available for the 2-18 year age group.
A total of 380 participants, including people aged between 12 and 65 years, took part in the phase two study of Covaxin. The vaccine led to tolerable safety outcomes and enhanced humoral and cell-mediated immune responses. Only adults were enrolled in phase III trials.
This comes at a time when US has given nod to Pfizer vaccine for children between 12 and 15 years of age. Vaccine for all, including children, is being seen as an important step towards smashing the rising graph of Covid cases and disparity between vaccinated and non-vaccinated population to return to normality.
At present, India has no vaccine for children. Covaxin and Covishield have been made available for people above the age of 18, while several vaccination centres are administering doses only to people above the age of 45 in view of shortage.