After receiving emergency approval for its Covid-19 vaccine only in “clinical trial mode”, Bharat Biotech can now conduct its trials on children who are above the age of 12 years. The vaccine has already been used for children above 12 in the last round and has been declared safe. The Hyderabad-based firm is conducting Phase 3 trials.
Although the vaccination drive presently is only for the adults as mandated by the government, positive outcomes and further results with sufficient data will enable the vaccination drive to be conducted on children in the future.
On Sunday, Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan had clarified that emergency approval for Covaxin is different from the one given for Serum Institute’s Covishield because Covaxin’s use will be in clinical trial mode.
All the recipients will be tracked and monitored as if they are participating in a trial.
However, soon after the government’s green signal for Covaxin, much before the completion of the clinical trials and submission of data on efficacy, it stoked a political controversy between the BJP and the opposition.
The Congress has demanded that its use should be avoided till the clinical trials are over.
Meanwhile, Dr. Harsh Vardhan had said the party is simply politicizing a “critical issue” and “science-backed protocols” were followed to give approval.
Moreover, Dr. Vardhan also said that Covaxin is more likely to work against the mutant strains on the virus, like the one that emerged in the UK.