Nepal gives emergency use approval to China’s Sinovac Covid-19 vaccineWith this the number of vaccines that Nepal’s drug regulator has given approval to reaches five.
At a time when the country is scrambling to obtain Covid-19 vaccines amidst rising coronavirus cases, Nepal’s national drug regulatory authority has granted emergency use approval to the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine developed by Sinovac Life Sciences Co Ltd. of China.
A meeting of the drug advisory committee of the Department of Drug Administration on Friday decided to issue a conditional emergency use authorization to the vaccine, according to a press statement issued by the department.
With the latest approval of the Chinese vaccine, the number of vaccines granted emergency use permission has reached five.
Before this, the national drug regulatory authority had granted emergency use approval to Sputnik V, a Covid-19 vaccine developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology of Russia.
Other vaccines that have been granted emergency use approval are the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, developed by the University of Oxford and pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, the Sinopharm BBIP-CorV vaccine developed by Sinopharm/China National Pharmaceutical Group, and Covaxin developed by Bharat Biotech of India.
The notice says that the vaccine can be used for active immunisation of individuals for 18 years of age or above for the prevention against the Covid-19.
The World Health Organization gave approval to the Sinovac vaccine on June 1.
Despite being one of the first countries to launch the vaccination drive, Nepal is struggling to inoculate its population, as the government has not been able to acquire vaccines.
On Thursday, the US also announced that it would be distributing 7 million Covid-19 vaccines among Asian countries, including Nepal. However, it is not clear how many doses AstraZeneca Nepal would be receiving.
Nepal so far has vaccinated around 5 percent of the 30 million population. Just a little over 1 percent of people have been fully vaccinated.