Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Tuesday said the Covid-19 vaccine for children is likely to be launched in the country by August. Mandaviya shared the information at the BJP Parliamentary party meeting, also attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
#BREAKING | New Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya told MPs in Parliamentary party meeting that vaccines against #COVID19 for children will be available by August.@payalmehta100 shares details with @ShivaniGupta_5 pic.twitter.com/Aa8dNrA8JP— News18 (@CNNnews18) July 27, 2021
He also said that India is soon going to be the largest vaccine-producing country as more companies will get production licenses.
Experts believe vaccinating children and teens will play a big role in developing the herd immunity that a society needs to ward off a contagion like the COVID-19 outbreak. The third wave of COVID-19 is expected to hit the nation in September-October. However, children may not have a severe infection, AIIMS director Randeep Guleria had said.
Earlier last week, Dr Randeep Guleria, the director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), also said that the trials of Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin on children were underway and the results were expected by September. As of now, Covaxin trials are underway on children aged between 2 to 6 in Delhi AIIMS.
In June this year, the AIIMS started screening children aged 2 to 17 for trials of the COVID-19 vaccine. The move came a month after the DGCI granted permission to Bharat Biotech to carry out phase 2, phase 3 trials of Covaxin on children as young as two.
Along with Covaxin, clinical trials of the vaccine developed by Zydus Cadila is also underway. Dr NK Arora, who heads the National Expert Group on Vaccines, had earlier this month said that vaccination for children will start by September with the Zydus vaccine for 12 to 18-year-olds.
India has so far authorised the emergency use of COVID-19 vaccines on citizens above the age of 18.