COVID-19 Vaccine India Updates: The Centre is expediting the process to give clearance to Serum Institute, Pune, which wants to take up the phase 3 trial of the Oxford vaccine before it starts mass-producing the vaccine. Also Read - COVID-19 Vaccine: Pune Firm Gets Nod For Human Trial of Covishield, 1,600 People to Participate

Soon after the Oxford vaccine kindled some hope in the worldwide fights against COVID-19, Serum Institute of India chief executive officer Adar Poonawalla said that the company will apply for permission for phase 3 trials for the Oxford vaccine in India next week and will begin the study soon. Also Read - COVID-19 Vaccine: Who Will Receive First? Frontline Workers? Who Next? Deliberations on in Health Ministry

The Centre has said that the clearance process will be expedited and the firm will be provided with every kind of assistance. Also Read - COVID-19 Vaccine Updates: Delay on Cards? Serum Institute Asked to Revise Trial Protocols

The CEO of the firm, Adar Poonawalla, has said in interviews that the mass production of the vaccine will begin next year. The cost of the vaccine will be kept below Rs 1,000. But in all probabilities, the government may buy and provide to the public at a free of cost through immunisation programmes, reports said. The firm is also working for other countries.

Apart from this, the Centre has already started discussions on how to make COVID-19 vaccines, being developed in India, available to all those who need it, Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog, has said.

“Discussions have already begun on how will the vaccines be made available to all those who need it,” he said.

Bharat Biotech, Serum Institute, Zydus Cadila, Panacea Biotec, Indian Immunologicals, Mynvax and Biological E are among the seven domestic pharma firms working on the coronavirus vaccines in India.

Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin has started human trials. There are 12 places where the trial for Covaxin will take place as per the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR).

Zydus Cadila has said that it is looking to complete clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate ZyCoV-D in seven months.