- The government intends to change its vaccination strategy.
- The government will examine whether different vaccine doses can be mixed.
- Another study will be conducted to see if Covishield can be used as a single-dose vaccine.
As India’s coronavirus vaccination campaign continues, the Central government has decided to study whether the Covishield vaccine may be given as a single dosage rather than two shots.
Oxford University in the United Kingdom and AstraZeneca, a British-Swedish pharmaceutical company, collaborated on the Covishield vaccination. The Serum Institute of India is the company that makes it. In India, it is known as Covishield, and outside of India, it is known as Vaxzevria.
The government has expanded the time between two Covishield vaccine shots from 4-6 weeks to 12-16 weeks.
According to sources, if the government decides to deliver Covishield in a single-dose regimen, it will help cover a much larger population more rapidly.
According to reports citing sources, the AstraZeneca vaccine was originally intended to be a single-shot vaccination, but after research on its efficacy, it was decided to be a two-dose vaccine.
According to NK Arora, chairman of the COVID-19 working group of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI), the question of whether a single shot will give adequate protection is being discussed.
According to sources, the government believes Covishield should also be available as a single-dose vaccine, as other vaccines based on the same platform, such as the Sputnik V Light and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccines are single dose vaccine.
“We’re testing the efficacy of a single Covishield shot. Johnson & Johnson, Sputnik Light, and Covishield are all founded on the same principle,” Dr. Arora said.
The news came as the government said that it will test with combining different vaccine doses to see if this improved the immune response against coronavirus.
“In the coming weeks, India may begin testing the feasibility of a Covid vaccination regimen that includes two different dosages to see if it helps boost the immune response to the virus,” Dr. Arora added.
“We have learned that Spain, United Kingdom and Europe, are conducting a research in which two vaccines, Covishield and Pfizer, are administered on alternate days. Pfizer as the first dose and Covishield as the second dose, or vice versa. Interchangeability studies is what they’re called,” he said.