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Vaccinating adults against COVID-19 the priority; decision on ZyCoV-D soon, says Niti Aayog

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Dr VK Paul, Member-Health, Niti Aayog, said the World Health Organisation (WHO) has not recommended general vaccination for children and there was no need to panic.

Vaccinating adults against COVID-19 the priority; decision on ZyCoV-D soon, says Niti Aayog
Niti Aayog member Dr VK Paul on Tuesday said the priority is to vaccinate all adults against COVID-19. He said the World Health Organisation (WHO) has not recommended general vaccination for children and there was no need to panic.
"Our attention at this moment should be to vaccinate all adults. Throughout the world, the opening up of vaccination for children is small. WHO does not recommend general vaccination for children even today. There's no need to panic, we are in step with the developments," said Dr Paul, Member-Health at Niti Aayog.
On the issue of including Zydus Cadila's ZyCoV-D vaccine in the inoculation program, he said the discussion on its pricing is underway and a decision will be taken soon. "We are looking to include this vaccine in the national vaccination program," he said.
Currently, India administers three vaccines against COVID-19 -- Serum Institute of India's Covishield, Bharat Biotech's Covaxin, and Russia's Sputnik V.
Also, the WHO is expected to give a nod to Covaxin this week, reports said. The WHO has so far approved Covid vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech, US pharma majors Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, China's Sinopharm, and Oxford-AstraZeneca for emergency use.
"We know of positive developments - data sharing, data evaluation going on through multiple reviews and we know that we're close to the decision point. We believe that positive decision could be coming in before month-end," he said.
Covaxin is one of the six vaccines that have received emergency use authorisation from India's drug regulator and is being used in the nationwide inoculation programme, along with Covishield and Sputnik V. "The WHO approval for Covaxin is likely this month," an official source said.
With inputs from PTI