INDIA – The Serum Institute has urged Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya to consider shortening the time between the second and precaution doses of Covishield from nine months to three months, in accordance with the Centre’s revised guidelines for officials on election duty, Economic Times reports.

The Pune-based company also asked the minister to allow it to administer Covishield’s precaution dose to anyone over the age of 18.

Prakash Kumar Singh, director, Government and Regulatory Affairs at SII, is said to have stated in a letter to Mandaviya that the third dose of COVID-19 vaccine is being administered within 6 months of the second dose in various countries, and this schedule is giving very good results in controlling the infection, according to an official source.

Singh also stated that private companies, educational institutions, social organizations, central government organizations, and public enterprise firms, amongst others, are frequently requesting the third dose of Covishield for their employees and families.

He referred to a letter from the Union Health Ministry dated January 21, according to which the precaution dose will be administered three months after the second dose of the vaccine was given to officers and employees deployed on election duty in the poll-bound states of Goa, Manipur, Punjab, Uttarakhand, and Uttar Pradesh.

Important changes have been made to the CoWIN portal to allow for the early administration of the precaution dose

Cumulative global covid-19 cases have reached 388,202,063, according to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. The worldwide death toll has hit 5,713,601.

Until January 28, a couple of 10 million people received the third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, with Covishield accounting for more than 9 million doses.

The official request comes against the backdrop of India’s Covid-related deaths surpassing the half-a-million mark, a grim milestone for the nation, Economic Times has reported.

In view of the above facts, we request for your kind intervention and consideration on our following submissions: The administration of third dose of our Covishield vaccine should be allowed for all individuals above the age of 18 years.

The gap between second and third dose to be reduced and the administration of third dose of Covishield vaccine to be allowed after the completion of 3 months in line with revised guidelines of GoI for the officials and staff deployed on election duty,” the official source quoted Singh as having said in the letter.

Sir, it is need of the hour and in the interest of public at large… This will help to control unpredictable and fast spread of various strains of COVID-19 which is disrupting economy and social stability of our country,” Singh mentioned within the letter.

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