Serum Institute and Bharat Biotech jointly pledge for smooth rollout of COVID-19 vaccine
The controversy over the two COVID-19 vaccines approved for use by the government has ended with the heads of both the companies which manufacture them pledging towards a smooth rollout of this antidote to fight the pandemic.
In a joint statement, Serum Institute of India (SII) CEO Adar Poonawala and Bharat Biotech Chairman and Managing Director Krishna Ella communicated their combined intent to develop, manufacture and supply the COVID-19 vaccines for India and the world.
They said that the more important task in front of them was saving the lives and livelihoods of populations in India and across the world. Vaccines are a global public health good and they have the power to save lives and accelerate the return to economic normalcy at the earliest, the statement said.
SII is the manufacturer of Covishield, the vaccine developed by Oxford and AstraZeneca, while Bharat Biotech’s product is named Covaxin.
The joint statement said since the two COVID-19 vaccines have been given emergency use authorisation in India, the focus is on manufacturing, supply and distribution, so that that populations that need it the most receive high quality, safe and efficacious vaccines.
“Both our companies are fully engaged in this activity and consider it our duty to the nation and the world at large to ensure a smooth rollout of vaccines. Each of our companies continues their COVID-19 vaccines development activities as planned,” the statement said.
The two companies emphasised the respect each has for the other on their work, and decided to put behind the miscommunication and misunderstanding caused during the past week.
The controversy between the two companies erupted as each accused the other of not fully following the scientific process in the testing of their vaccine.
“We are fully aware of the importance of vaccines for people and countries alike, we hereby communicate our joint pledge to provide global access for our COVID-19 vaccines,” the statement said.