TNIE Covid Think Tank: Why India is not a vaccine superpower, shares Dr Krishna Udayakumar

By Express News Service
If India had been able to keep the infection spread at bay for another six months or so, it would have been be a massive global success story because it would have given time to ramp up vaccine manufacturing and given enough time to provide enough doses to high-risk individuals in India, said Dr Krishna Udayakumar, Founder of the Duke Global Health Innovation Centre.

“Right now, there is a humanitarian crisis in India and rightly so, the domestic manufacturing is being used for domestic needs. But almost a hundred of the poorest countries getting Covaxin through the AMC model also don’t get access to the vaccines as they are predominantly relying on manufacturing in India by the Serum Institute for their access. We are unfortunately seeing a disaster unfolding in India that’s going to continue for weeks and in the downstream it has led to the lack of vaccines to the rest of the world,” he explained while speaking on the topic Vaccine Vexation: Making a Case for Access.

Dr Udayakumar was speaking at the COVID Think Tank organised by The New Indian Express on June 7, 2021. The online event is being conducted from June 7 to 15 where eminent experts will speak on the COVID-19 crisis.Speaking on how India and countries around the world could have prepared better for the second wave, he added, “What’s happening around is heartbreaking and it is disruption that could have been avoided. But instead of feeling a sense of urgency to be prepared for what would inevitably be a second wave of infections, what we saw instead among politicians especially was complacency and a premature declaration of victory over the pandemic,” he said and added that it is important to spend on health.