SII to Launch COVID-19 Vaccine for Children in 6 Months: Adar Poonawalla

Poonawalla said that SII and scientists from Oxford are working on a booster shot to combat the Omicron variant.

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The Serum Institute of India (SII) will launch Covovax – the COVID-19 vaccine for children – in six months, Adar Poonawalla, the vaccine manufacturing giant's CEO, said on Tuesday, 14 December.

He stated that the vaccine was "under trial" and had shown "excellent data all the way down to the age group of 3," news agency Reuters quoted.

Poonawalla was speaking at the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Partnership Summit 2021, organised in association with the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

Further, he underlined that the global vaccine output had outmatched the demand in several countries, including India.

"Certain countries have only vaccinated to the tune of 10 percent or 15 percent of the population, they really need to go to 60-70 percent," he was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Speaking on the concern surrounding the Omicron variant, Poonawalla said that SII and scientists from Oxford are working on a booster shot that would specifically be more effective against the new mutant variant.

"On the back of enough data, it is safe to say that booster vaccine doses are a proven strategy to get antibodies up to a great extent," Poonawalla iterated, as quoted by ANI.


For now, SII-manufactured vaccines such as Covishield (AstraZeneca) and Sputnik are only cleared for inoculating adults in the country.

Further, SII's monthly output of Covishield, which has nearly quadrupled since April, is likely to see a dip in production in view of the waning demand.

(With inputs from Reuters)

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