Only 5.45 crore Covaxin doses supplied till July 16, Bharat Biotech has promised to increase monthly capacity to 5.8 crore: Govt To Parliament
Bharat Biotech is also still to get the World Health Organisation’s approval for Covaxin, an application for which was submitted by the company to the WHO on July 9, 2021.
July 20, 2021 / 08:34 PM IST
Bharat Biotech's Covaxin was granted restricted emergency use approval in 'clinical trial mode' on January 2.
Only one engine of the COVID-19 vaccine supply seems to be firing in the country. The government has told Parliament that it has got 5.45 crore doses of Covaxin in over six months till July 16 from Bharat Biotech. The company had orders to supply 8 crore jabs by July-end.
Government says the company has communicated that it will be increasing its monthly production to 5.8 crore doses soon. “The procurement process of COVID-19 vaccines has adequate in-built mechanisms of financial penalty in case of delay in delivery of vaccines by the manufacturers. The current average monthly capacity of production of Covishield by Serum Institute of India is 11 crore doses and of Covaxin by Bharat Biotech International Limited is 2.5 crore doses,” the Health Ministry has told Parliament in a written reply.
India is banking on Bharat Biotech for nearly 48 crore doses in all, and placed an order of 19 crore doses to be supplied starting from August.
The supply of 5.45 crore doses of Covaxin between January 1 and July 16 includes the procurement done by the Government of India, State Government and Private Hospitals, the Centre said in its reply. 36.01 crore doses of Covishield from the Serum Institute have been received in the same period, which has told the government that it will increase its monthly production to 12 crore doses soon. 3.3 million doses of Sputnik V have been imported so far, the government told Parliament.
Bharat Biotech is also still to get the World Health Organisation’s approval for Covaxin, an application for which was submitted by the company to the WHO on July 9, 2021. “Based on time taken for approval of other COVID-19 vaccines, it is estimated that the WHO-EUL process takes approximately 2 to 3 months from the date of submission,” the government said in another reply to the Parliament.
Regarding the supply of Pfizer and Moderna, the government said COVID-19 vaccine manufactured by Moderna has been approved for Restricted Use in Emergency situation by the Drug Controller General of India but the COVID-19 vaccine manufactured by Pfizer is not yet approved by the national regulator. “No doses of Moderna and Pfizer vaccines have so far been received under US donation programme. NEGVAC is deliberating with offshore COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers including Moderna and Pfizer for procurement of these vaccines,” the government said.