The government today removed the fourth vaccine for use in emergencies in the country, Moderna made in the United States.
The largest Cipla which is in Mumbai has been approved to import Moderna’s Covid vaccine for emergency use in India, where the vaccine used so far was Covaxin of Barat Biotech and Serum Institute of India’s Covishield. Russia’s Sputnik was also recently ousted.
“Cipla Limited supports Moderna Inc with the legalization and importation of vaccines to be offered in India. At present, there is no specific agreement on commercial goods,” Cipla said in a statement.
Release plan details have not yet been released. It is unclear how many doses will be available in India and when. Sources say that at the moment, Cipla is only looking at achieving donation goals; trade agreements are still being processed.
Of the four, Moderna has the highest performance – 94 percent successful compared to Sputnik (91 percent), Covaxin (77.8 percent) and Covishield (74 percent).
VK Paul said that he is pleased to inform you that a request from Moderna for their Indian counterpart Cipla has been approved. This opens the way for the vaccine to be introduced soon. Other procedures will be followed. But it is important that the license is granted.
Dr Paul said only permits have been issued to Moderna at the moment.
Both Pfizer and Moderna have asked for a very important permit – they are seeking compensation in debt in the event of a negative impact on the vaccine. India has so far never provided compensation for any vaccine.
Dr Paul said the government had “had a lot of time” with Pfizer and the company should take the next step.
“We are in the process of negotiating. There has been an exchange of information and submissions. There has been a reconciliation with this.
Recently, Pfizer chief executive Albert Bourla had said the company’s vaccine might soon be available in India as its approval process is “final”.
Mr Bourla said that Pfizer is now in the final stages of obtaining approval for the COVID-19 vaccine in India. I hope soon we will finalize an agreement with the government.
Like Pfizer, Moderna is an mRNA vaccine with genetic fragments known as messenger RNA.
The vaccine works by giving cells temporary instructions for making the coronavirus spike protein. Proteins are found in the surface of the COVID-19 virus.
Cipla has received approval to import the modern vaccine within 24 hours of its introduction, thanks to a revised government policy for the immediate approval of foreign vaccines. It took Sputnik two months to get the same permit.
Cipla, in his application to the drug regulator, had appealed to the government’s decision to suspend prescription drug tests if it is used for emergency use in countries such as the US and if safety information for the first 100 beneficiaries is entered before weight loss is released.