A vial of COVID-19 vaccine COVAXIN . — AFP/VNA Photo
HÀ NỘI — The Vietnamese health ministry on Wednesday gave conditional approval for India’s COVID-19 vaccine COVAXIN, making it the ninth to receive emergency use authorisation in the country.
The move followed the World Health Organisation (WHO)'s emergency use listing (EUL) for COVAXIN on November 3.
The WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunisation (SAGE) recommended use of the vaccine in two doses, with a dose interval of four weeks, in all age groups 18 and above.
COVAXIN was found to have 78 per cent efficacy against COVID-19 of any severity, two weeks or more after the second dose, WHO noted, adding that the standard 2-8 degrees Celsius temperature requirements for storing the vaccine is “extremely suitable for low- and middle-income countries,” WHO’s announcement said.
According to the Vietnamese health ministry, each dose of 0.5mg of intramuscular injection solution contained 6mcg of whole-virion inactivated SARS-CoV-2 antigen (strain NIV-2020-770) and other inactive ingredients.
The vaccine is presented in single dose vials and multidose vials of 5, 10, and 20 doses, with 16 vials in each box.
The vaccine is manufactured by Bharat Biotech International Limited.
It is not publicly available at the moment what purchase order or agreements Việt Nam has for the Indian vaccines.
The other eight types of vaccines that were given approval for use in Việt Nam are Oxford/AstraZeneca (AstraZeneca); Sputnik V (Russia’s Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology); Janssen (Johnson & Johnson); Spikevax (Moderna); Comirnaty (Pfizer-BioNTech); Vero Cell (China National Biotec Group (CNBG)/Sinopharm); Hayat-Vax (CNBG); and Abdala (Cuba’s AICA Laboratories, Base Business Unit AICA).
To date, 92.2 million COVID-19 vaccine shots have been administered in Việt Nam, including 30.3 million being second doses.
As of Tuesday, 12 localities – Quảng Ninh, Ninh Bình, Lào Cai, Đà Nẵng, Thừa Thiên-Huế, HCM City, Cà Mau, Bình Dương, Vĩnh Long, Đồng Nai, Kiên Giang, and Sóc Trăng, started giving Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to children aged 12-17.
About a million doses have been administered to this age group. — VNS