International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh has sought government permission to conduct the last-stage trials of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac Biotech Limited at seven hospitals in Dhaka.
Following a meeting with the ICDDR,B delegates, health secretary Md Abdul Mannan told the press at his office on Tuesday that the health research institute’s application for conducting trials among 4,200 health workers would be evaluated soon.
Earlier on July 20, Bangladesh Medical Research Council gave ethical permission of conducting the trials of the Chinese vaccine in Bangladesh.
ICDDR,B applied for conducting trials among the health workers at Dhaka Medical College Hospital’s Unit 1 and Unit 2, Mugda General Hospital, Kurmitola General Hospital, Kuwait-Bangladesh Friendship Hospital, Holy Family Hospital and Mahanagar General Hospital, BMRC director Mahmood-uz-Jahan said.
If the trials succeed, he said, Bangladesh would get the vaccine for free or at a very cheap price.
The health secretary at his Tuesday briefing said that besides the Chinese company the government was negotiating with several other organisations, including Oxford University, which were conducting the last-stage trials of their COVID-19 vaccines.
‘Bill Gates-initiated international vaccine group Gavi also included Bangladesh on its list of the countries which would get vaccines from the charity organisation and sought representation of Bangladesh at its upcoming meeting scheduled in September,’ Mannan said.
‘So we expect to get some doses just after getting approval of any COVID-19 vaccine in any country through the Gavi initiative,’ he said.
At present, the last-stage trials of the COVID-19 vaccines developed by six countries were at the final stages, he added.
ICDDR,B representatives said that they would conduct trials among the health workers aged between 18 and 59 years and the process would take six months.
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