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Covovax will help Serum Institute of India to enter adolescents COVID-19 vaccine market

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The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has recently granted emergency use authorization for Novavax‘s protein-based COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents aged 12 to 18 years. Novavax’s partner Serum Institute of India (SII) will market it under the brand name Covovax. This move will help SII enter the adolescents’ COVID-19 vaccine market in India, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

SII dominates India’s overall COVID-19 vaccination drive with its vaccine Covishield (through AstraZeneca partnership). According to the Government of India Co-Win dashboard, as of 28 March 2022, Covishield accounted for 82% of the overall vaccine doses administered in the country for all age groups. India has so far administered over 1,830 million COVID-19 vaccine doses.

According to GlobalData’s Pharma Intelligence Center, Covovax is India’s fourth COVID-19 vaccine approved for adolescents aged 12 to 18 years.

Prashant Khadayate, Pharma Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Even though SII Covishield dominated the overall vaccination drive in India, it is not approved for adolescents. Now, SII can target adolescents through Covovax approval.  Notably, Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin and Biological E’s Corbevax are the leading COVID-19 vaccines in this segment.”

India initiated COVID-19 vaccination for 15 to 18 years group from January 2022 and so far has administered over 90 million doses. Vaccination for the 12 to 14 years group started from 16 March 2022 and over 12 million doses have been administered as of 26 March 2022.

Within the adolescent age group, Covaxin leads the 15 to 18 years age group while Biological E’s Corbevax dominates the vaccination of 12 to 14 years.

Khadayate concludes: “India is now focusing on the vaccination of adolescents. Government orders drive the majority of the vaccination in the country. Therefore, it is important to make Covovax part of the government supply through competitive pricing for quick penetration. Moreover, adolescents’ vaccination in India is progressing at a rapid pace. Any delay in making Covovax available will impact the overall market potential in this age group.”

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