Covishield is also the vaccine that has been administered to 90 per cent of the total vaccine recipients in India.The second wave of COVID-19 is crippling as many as 4 lakh people in a day and Indian government has rolled out the vaccination drive for everyone above the age of 18 years of age. At a time like this, there is a shortage of vaccines in the country. Indian vaccine manufacturer Serum Institute of India’s (SII) chief executive Adar Poonawalla has said that the shortage of vaccine is likely to remain till July, a report by The Indian Express citing Financial Times noted.
Poonawalla mentioned that the production of vaccines will increase to about 100 million in July from 60-70 million doses a month. According to him, the authorities did not expect the second wave back in January as the Coronavirus cases were on a decline.
However, now with a tsunami of COVID-19 cases, India is facing shortage of Coronavirus vaccines. On May 1, vaccination opened for all adults in the country. Poonawalla, according to the report, said that the manufacturing firm has been under scrutiny for vaccine shortage and the reason the capacity was not given a boost in the first place was because there were no orders. “We did not think we needed to make more than 1 billion doses a year,” the report quoted Poonawalla as saying. It is to note that SII is producing Covishield developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca. Covishield is also the vaccine that has been administered to 90 per cent of the total vaccine recipients in India.
As SII came under the lens and is being blamed for the vaccine shortage, the company CEO has moved to the UK for the time being. On Sunday, Poonawalla said that the vaccine’s production is going on in full swing in Pune, where SII’s factory is and he will be reviewing operations when he returns to India in a few days.
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