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COVID vaccine makers will be held liable for adverse effects: Centre

The statement comes as part of the purchase order after manufacturers had asked the government to not hold them legally responsible for adverse effects of the jabs.

January 14, 2021 / 09:24 AM IST
Representative Image (Source: Reuters)

Representative Image (Source: Reuters)

The Centre has said that vaccine makers in India will be held liable for "complications or adverse effects" that occur due to their doses.

The statement comes as part of the purchase order after manufacturers had asked the government to not hold them legally responsible for adverse effects of the jabs.

However, the Centre's purchase order with the vaccine manufacturers specifies that they will have to inform the government in case of any "health risks or complications due to the vaccine," The Economic Times reported.

Follow our LIVE updates on the coronavirus pandemic here

“During the usual vaccination drive, it is the responsibility of the company to provide protection in case of any untoward incident. The same has been followed here too,” a senior government official said.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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Moneycontrol could not independently verify the report.

The statement reads as: “Company shall be liable for all adversities as per CDSCO/ Drugs and Cosmetics Act/DCGI policy/approval."

Bharat Biotech and Serum Institute of India (SII) did not respond to queries, it said.

Check here for the latest updates on all COVID-19 vaccines

Vaccine makers had asked the government to adopt an indemnity clause after many countries including Canada, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the European Union, assumed at least part of the burden while acknowledging urgency to develop vaccines in a short period amid the COVID-19 pandemic, it noted.

In fact, SII CEO Adar Poonawalla had earlier said the government should indemnify vaccine manufacturers from all lawsuits.

Besides countries, the World Health Organisation (WHO) had also adopted a "no-fault compensation scheme for indemnification and liability issues for Covid-19 vaccine makers" with its Covax vaccine facility partners.

Follow our full COVID-19 coverage here
Moneycontrol News
first published: Jan 14, 2021 03:07 am

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