The World Health Organisation gave its nod for the Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use and now it has become the first Chinese jab to receive the green signal. China has approved five of its Covid-19 vaccines for emergency use.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, "WHO gave emergency use listing to Sinopharm Beijing's Covid-19 vaccine, making it the sixth vaccine to receive WHO validation for safety, efficacy and quality."
He further added that, "The Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunisation, or SAGE, has also reviewed the available data, and recommends the vaccine for adults 18 years and older, with a two-dose schedule."
Beijing Bio-Institute of Biological Products Co Ltd, a subsidiary of China National Biotec Group (CNBG) has produced the Sinopharm vaccine.
This vaccine is an inactivated vaccine called SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine and is very easy to store, thereby making it highly suitable for low-resource settings.
According to the reports, "The Sinopharm vaccine is already in use in 42 territories around the world, fourth behind AstraZeneca (166), Pfizer-BioNTech (94) and Moderna (46)."
Besides China, it is being used in Algeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Hungary, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Peru, the United Arab Emirates, Serbia and Seychelles, etc.
The vaccine is an inactivated coronavirus just like COVAXIN. As per WHO, Sinopharm has an efficacy of about 79 percent for symptomatic and hospitalised disease for all age groups. The vaccine is administered to adults of the age of 18 and above in a two-dose schedule with a gap of three to four weeks.