The WHO (World Health Organization) on Monday said it cannot cut corners before recommending Bharat Biotech's COVID-19 vaccine 'Covaxin', and said it is expecting "one additional piece of information from the company today".
"We are aware that many people are waiting for WHO’s recommendation for Covaxin to be included in the #COVID19 Emergency Use Listing, but we cannot cut corners - before recommending a product for emergency use, we must evaluate it thoroughly to make sure it is safe and effective," WHO tweeted.
"Bharat Biotech - the manufacturer of Covaxin - has been submitting data to WHO on a rolling basis and WHO experts have reviewed these data. WHO is expecting one additional piece of information from the company today," it added.
The global health agency said the timeframe for the WHO Emergency Use Listing procedure is dependent on how quickly a company producing the vaccine is able to provide the data required for it to evaluate the vaccine’s quality, safety, efficacy and its suitability for low and middle-income countries.
"When the information provided addresses all questions raised, WHO and the Technical Advisory Group will complete the assessment and come to a final recommendation whether to grant Emergency Use Listing to the vaccine," it further said.
Earlier, WHO chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan had said the global health agency's technical advisory group will meet on October 26 to consider the emergency use listing of Covaxin.
"@WHO has been working closely with @BharatBiotech to complete the dossier. Our goal is to have a broad portfolio of vaccines approved for emergency use and to expand access to populations everywhere," she said in the tweet.
The Hyderabad-based company had submitted EOI (Expression of Interest) to the WHO on April 19 for its vaccine.
Bharat Biotech recently said it has submitted all data pertaining to Covaxin to the WHO for the EUL and is awaiting feedback from the global health watchdog.