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Friday, January 21, 2022

SII working to develop COVID-19 booster shot more effective against Omicron: Adar Poonawalla | India News

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New Delhi: Serum Institute of India has said that they are working towards developing a vaccine booster shot which is more effective against the Omicron virus. SII Chief Executive Officer Adar Poonawalla said that on the basis of enough data, it is safe to say that booster vaccine are a proven strategy to increase antibodies to a great extent.

COVID vaccines for children aged above 3 years will be launched in the next 6 months, Poonawala said. 

“After two years of the pandemic, India is now better prepared to deal with such catastrophe, and hopefully the worst is behind us all. The Government of India has been working towards creating an effective healthcare system and has made enough provision for hospital beds and oxygen,” Adar Poonawalla said at the CII Partnership Summit 2021, organised in association with the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

He said that with over a billion-dollar investment that has gone into developing and manufacturing the COVID-19 vaccine, the journey so far has given us several key lessons owing to the rapidly changing situation in accordance with the mutating virus.

Poonawalla said that globally, the supply of vaccines has outmatched its demand. 

“To keep up with the momentum, countries need to come together and form some agreement in order to prepare standard rules for clinical trials and manufacturing of the vaccines. Multilateral organisations and policymakers should be able to identify and isolate the new mutation/s and find out the efficacy of the vaccine against it, in a time-bound manner. Joining two other companies which are working towards developing the vaccine for children, SII has reached the trial phase of the vaccine for children aged above 3. It should be ready within the next 6 months,” he said. 

Commending the Government of India`s role in tackling the challenges posed by the pandemic in the last two years, he stated that going forward, Government and industry should work even more closely to further improve the business environment and simplify the rules and regulations for manufacturers to expand the sector.

Rajan Navani, Chairman, CII`s India@75 Council and Vice Chairman and Managing Director, Jetline Industries, noted that Omicron has created fresh challenges for the world. 

He referred to CII`s India@75 campaign which has been working on several areas since 2008. 

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