The world at large pins hopes that vaccines will be the next big thing to prevent the increasing curve of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus or SARS-CoV-2.
Currently, scientists, health researchers and drugmakers all over the world are racing to create one – but how long it will take to come to the fore is a curious question; by what time the entire population of India will get access to COVID-19 vaccine?, where do we stand in COVID-19 vaccine development? All these aspects were brought to discussion during Episode-9 of the HEAL-Thy Samvaad, organised by the ‘Healthcare Advocacy Group’ – HEAL Foundation in association with ICCIDD on 15th October 2020.
Experts are cautiously optimistic that we may, perhaps, get a vaccine by March next year, if everything goes as planned. Worldwide, about 40 vaccine candidates are in the race of vaccination. In India, 3 vaccines are in different stages of clinical trials. However, the COVID-19 crisis requires accelerated pathways for vaccine development. Proven success factors of H1N1 and Ebola have turned out as guiding principles in COVID-19 vaccine development. Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has asserted that 400 million vaccines will be made available by next year.