China-based Sinopharm’s CoViD-vaccine has recently been granted the ‘Emergency Use Approval’ by the WHO. China has already used the Sinopharm-vaccine to immunize millions of people there. In addition to China, UAE, Pakistan and Hungary are already using the vaccine.
Various other countries, especially poorer ones in Africa, Latin America and Asia have granted ‘Emergency Use Approval’ for Sinopharm-vaccine. The clinical efficacy of the vaccine was found to be 79% among symptomatic and hospitalized CoVid-19 patients.
The Sinopharm-vaccine is an inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine. It can be easily stored at normal refrigeration temperatures. This can be helpful for developing countries with meagre storage facilities and low-resource settings. Sinopharm-vaccine is also the first vaccine carrying a ‘Vaccine Vial Monitor’, a small sticker on the vaccine vials that change colour if the vaccine is exposed to high temperature, heat, enabling the health workers and end-users to know whether the vaccine is still efficient to be used.
WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) has already validated the safety and efficacy of the vaccine. WHO recommends that the vaccine can be administered in two doses to those aged 18 and above. The vaccine will be used in the Global Covax Programme, which was set up last year to ensure fair access to vaccines and its uniform distribution among rich and poor nations, as per Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of World Health Organisation.
Covid vaccines by Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and Moderna are the others approved by the organisation so far. Another Chinese vaccine, Sinovac (Coronavac) is still awaiting approval from WHO.