Pune-based Serum Institute of India or SII is expected to rollout Covovax by August, CEO Adar Poonawalla has said. Covovax has been developed by the US vaccine company Novavax. SII will start stockpiling Novavax vaccine, which the company will test on the domestic population in a bridging study in April.
“The good news is that we are going to start stockpiling the product starting in the month of April, so that we have a huge stockpile which we can then distribute the minute we are licenced,” Poonawalla said.
Commenting on reaching the goal of supplying two billion doses to COVAX by year-end, he said: “I think end of this year will probably be challenging. There are a lot of manufacturers who have not been able to supply to their commitments and timelines, including Serum Institute, to a certain extent.” Poonawalla also added that an additional 3-4 months will be required to supply vaccines for COVAX owing to vaccine nationalism.
Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access, abbreviated as COVAX, is a global initiative aimed at equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines led by UNICEF, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organization, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and others.