The United States on April 26 said it will begin sharing its entire stock of 60 million doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines with other countries, including India, after it clears the safety check.
India urgently needs vaccines against COVID-19 because of the record rise in cases in the relentless second wave of the pandemic.
However, the Baltimore plant where the doses were manufactured, has come under regulatory scrutiny over botched manufacturing of Johnson & Johnson's (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine and fears of contamination.
The US Food and Drug Administration on April 19 halted production at the plant, owned by Emergent BioSolutions, after the J&J vaccine shots were ruined.
The US pressed J&J to take over the plant and, as part of the effort to ensure the quality of newly produced vaccines, directed the facility to stop making the AstraZeneca shot. AstraZeneca is still looking to identify a new US production facility for its future doses, Associated Press reported.
Canada's health department on April 25 said the 1.5 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine imported from the facility were safe and met quality specifications.
Mexico's deputy health minister also said the AstraZeneca doses shipped to Mexico from the Baltimore facility are safe and approved by two regulators.(With inputs from AP)