Chairman and Managing Director of Bharat Biotech, Dr. Krishna Ella on Saturday said that they are waiting for approval from the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for the COVID-19 vaccine for children. In an exclusive interview with ANI, Dr Ella also said they have almost completed phase two trials for the nasal vaccine and it has shown good results.
He said the results of their vaccine for children were "extremely good".
"We have done a clinical trial for gender and age and the results are extremely good, the safety profile is extremely good, safety is most important. SEC (subject expert committee) has approved it and now we are waiting for approval from the DCGI," Dr Ella said.
Referring to the nasal vaccine, he said it is going to be "a weapon to control COVID-19 transmission". "We've almost completed phase two trials for the nasal vaccine and it has shown good results. This vaccine will help in controlling the transmission of COVID-19 infection," he said.
He said many companies were trying to come up with nasal vaccine and the immunology part had to be understood first. Noting that COVID-19 vaccines help prevent going to the hospital, not necessarily the disease, he said vaccinated people are also advised to wear masks so that there is no spread of infection.
"We want everybody to wear a mask, but if it (nasal vaccine) comes, it will stop the transmission. So it will be working on the entire infection. The virus will not infect and when the virus doesn't infect, there is no transmission to others. We've been trying hard," he said.
Referring to India's landmark achievement of administering over 100 crore COVID-19 vaccine doses, Dr Ella said India "has done an amazing job" in achieving the milestone.
"We appreciate the government's commitment and also the healthcare workers are most important. I salute the citizens of this country as they are the ones proactively working in the interests of science. This was because of the collective efforts right from the government to citizens," Dr Ella said.
India's cumulative COVID-19 vaccination coverage crossed 100 crore doses on Thursday. The milestone was achieved in nearly nine months
He said exporting Covaxin to other countries was a good gesture of the government.
"We were already supplying vaccines under the Vaccine Maitri programme, I think the government has a sincere commitment towards helping the other countries," he said.