SII CEO Adar Poonawalla asks countries, governments to 'be patient' over COVID vaccine supplies

NEW DELHI: Pune-based Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla requested the countries to ‘be patient’ as they await the Covishield supplies, adding that SII is trying to maintain a balance between the needs of India and the world.

“Dear countries and governments, as you await COVISHIELD supplies, I humbly request you to please be patient, Serum Institute of India has been directed to prioritise the huge needs of India and along with that balance the needs of the rest of the world. We are trying our best,” Poonawalla said.

SII has been asked to prioritise India’s vaccine needs and balance it out with the supplies to the rest of the world who are procuring COVID vaccine doses from India.

ALSO READ: Notices issued on plea saying Covishield unsafe

India on Wednesday announced a gift of 2 lakh doses of Covid-19 vaccines for UN peacekeepers.

Earlier, he said that SII makes 70 to 80 million doses every month and the planning is underway for distribution to India and foreign countries.

Poonawalla said many countries have been writing to India and the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) for vaccines to be supplied from Serum Institute to their countries and they are trying to make everyone happy.

ALSO READ: Now, you can choose between Covaxin, Covishield in Tamil Nadu

“We are trying to keep everyone happy. We have to take care of our population and nation as well. We are trying to supply the vaccine to Africa, South America. So we are doing a little bit everywhere. So we will try to keep everyone happy,” he had said.

According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), the cumulative number of COVID-19 vaccine doses administered to healthcare and frontline workers crossed over 1.08 crore so far in the country.

The countrywide vaccination drive was rolled out on January 16, 2021. The vaccination of the frontline workers started on February 2.