Express News Service
NEW DELHI: On a day Bharat Biotech said that the production cycle of Covaxin is 120 days, the Centre too issued a clarification saying that the company is supplying over 3.11 crore vaccine doses by May while 90 lakh additional doses are expected next month.
It said that the current production capacity of Covaxin, which is 1 crore per month, will be doubled by May-June and then increased nearly 6-7 fold by July – August. It is expected to reach nearly 10 crore doses per month by September this year, the Union Health Ministry claimed in a statement.
“Vaccine being a biological product of medical importance takes time for harvesting and quality testing,” said the government. “This cannot be done overnight to ensure a safe product.”
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Thus, an increase in capacity of manufacturing too needs to be a guided process and an increase in gross production does not translate to immediate supply, the Centre maintained.
Till Friday morning, as per the data shared, Bharat Biotech has supplied 2,76,66,860 vaccine doses to the Centre. Out of these, 2,20,89,880 doses including wastage, have been consumed by all states in the ongoing vaccination drive.
With this, the balance of available doses of vaccine with states are 55,76,980 doses while private hospitals have also received 13,65,760 doses of Covaxin in the same month over and above what has been supplied to the governments at the Centre and the states, said the ministry.
In May, additional 21,54,440 doses of Covaxin are to be supplied. “This takes the total vaccine supplied and in pipeline till date to 3,11,87,060 doses,” the statement said, adding that nearly 90 lakh doses are committed for June by the manufacturer.