Harish Gupta, National Editor, Lokmat Group
New Delhi, July 22
After the Corona Warriors, India will need an army of “Vaccine Warriors” now. According to Drug Controller General of India (DGCI) and Union Health ministry estimates, the country will require at least 10000 “Vaccine Warriors”. The number may go up as more and more companies may start trials for the most-sought vaccine in the human history.
The response of people is tremendous in Delhi as AIIMS is flooded with requests for inclusion. More than 2000 applied while 375 needed
These warriors will undergo crucial trials being conducted by seven pharma companies during the next one year.
In Delhi’s AIIMS, the trial will begin tomorrow while in Goa the human trials began at the State’s Redkar Hospital today. In all, these trials are to be conducted at 12 locations across the country and 600 warriors will be administered first dose of Covaxin jointly produced by Bharat Biotech & ICMR. Then the same number will undergo for heavy doses and then the second phase will begin when 375 Vaccine Warriors will be needed.
These are called warriors as undergoing clinical trial is equally risky for the health and well being of the person.
The Prime Minister is personally monitoring the progress of these trials and talked to the Principal Scientific Adviser and co-chairman of the Task Force on Vaccine to get an update. The Task Force has Dr V K Paul, member NITI Aayog as its co-chair besides members of DRDO, Aayush, ICMR, DG Health Services.
The DCGI has permitted two vaccines -- one developed by the Bharat Biotech and another one by ZydusCadila Healthcare Ltd to conduct trials. At least five other companies including Panacea Biotec, Mynvax and Biological E are there. In addition, Serum Institute is on the verge of launching the Oxford vaccine as it is at phase III of the trials.
The Bharat Biotech’s vaccine trials over 1200 persons at 12 locations in India begins now. These sources say say one company would require around 1800-2000 such warriors during the next six months to one year.
Dr V G Somani, DCGI’s office declined to comment at this stage as to how many companies have been permitted for trials. Sources, however, said trials for the two more companies are set to begin soon.