29 September 2020 | News
The expansion follows August’s announcement of up to 100 million doses to be delivered by the collaboration, bringing the total now to be delivered by the partnership to up to 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines
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A further collaboration among the Serum Institute of India (SII), the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by volume, Gavi and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will accelerate the manufacture and delivery of up to 100 million doses of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines for India and low-and middle-income countries (LMICs) as part of the Gavi COVAX AMC, a mechanism within the COVAX Facility.
This brings the total number of vaccine doses to be covered by the partnership between SII, Gavi, and the Gates Foundation to an aggregate of up to 200 million doses, following the initial agreement for up to 100 million doses announced in August.The arrangement again provides an option to secure additional doses if the vaccines pillar of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator sees a need for it.
The collaboration will provide upfront capital to SII to help it increase manufacturing capacity now so that, once a vaccine, or vaccines, gains regulatory approval and WHO Prequalification, doses can be distributed at scale to LMICs as part of the Gavi COVAX AMC mechanism as early as the first half of 2021.
“The collaboration further bolsters up our fight against COVID-19! Through the avid support of Gavi and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, we will now manufacture and deliver up to an additional 100 million doses of immunogenic and safe-proven future COVID-19 vaccines to India andlow-and middle-income countries in 2021,” said Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Serum Institute of India “At this stage, It is important for governments, global health and financial institutions in the public and private sector to come together in ensuring that no one is left behind in the road to recovery. This association is In line with our efforts to see that the future vaccines reaches the remotest part of the world providing full immunization coverage in a bid to contain the spread ofthe pandemic.”
The funding will help accelerate the manufacturing by SII for candidate vaccines licensed from AstraZeneca and Novavax, which will be available for procurement if they are successful in attaining full licensure and WHO Prequalification. The vaccines will have a ceiling price of US$3 per dose, a price enabled by investments made by partners such as the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and SII.