Professor Priya Abraham, Director of ICMR- National Institute of Virology: There is no possibility of COVID-19 vaccine coming by 2021.
COVID-19 vaccine India latest update news: Earlier, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) had said to provide COVID-19 vaccine in India by August 15 (which experts had advised avoiding panic). A new controversy has arisen in India regarding the Coronavirus vaccine timeline. On this we recently had a conversation with Professor Priya Abraham, Director of ICMR- National Institute of Virology on the OnlyMyHealth Healthcare Heroes Awards 2020 (held online on October 8). Professor Priya was one of our jurists, and we asked her to throw some light on this one top question that is currently on every person’s mind, "The COVID-19 Vaccine."
How soon will the vaccine arrive for the coronavirus (COVID-19)?
As the novel coronavirus is continuously mutating, and the vaccine is the only way to control the outbreak. As per the Director of ICMR- National Institute of Virology, Professor Priya Abraham, usually, making a vaccine takes several years, and at this point, there are hundreds of groups all across the globe running in the race of researching and making a licensed vaccine. Therefore, we might not be begetting a vaccine earlier than the mid of 2021 (JUNE-JULY).
Are COVID-19 mutations massive? Speaking on the mutation of the coronavirus and whether the vaccine would be able to counter the mutations by then, Professor Priya says that the mutations are not gigantic. There are many thousands of strains of this disease but with a proportion of 99.95 per cent. This suggests that there is not much variation in the strains, and the vaccine would be put to the inspection before it is made accessible for use.
Department of Science and Technology on COVID-19 vaccine
Indeed, the 'Department of Science and Technology' (DST) under the Ministry of Science and Technology mentioned in a press release the possibility of the corona vaccine coming up by 2021 but later removed it from the release. The DST press release explained the various vaccine options being developed around the world, stating that two out of 11 candidates for human testing were Indian companies, who were allowed to be tested. It also mentioned that no vaccine would be available before 2021.
ICMR Director General Balram Bhargava on COVID-19 vaccine
- In a letter dated July 2, ICMR Director General Balram Bhargava said that the government had set a target to have the vaccine prepared in India against COVID-19 by 15 August.
- In the letter, he has asked the principal investigators of selected medical institutions and hospitals to approve at-the-man testing for the vaccine 'Covaxin' being developed in partnership with Bharat Biotech at the earliest.
- As per one report of Times of India, the medical and scientific community and public health experts cast doubt on the institute's credibility and ethics over the ICMR's claim of producing the vaccine by 15 August.
- In this context, when the DST stated that the vaccine was unlikely to be ready by 2021, its statement attracted public attention. It is supposed to have been improved by the information given by ICMR.
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