Drug firm Pfizer today said its pneumonia vaccine PCV 13 has been included in India’s immunisation programme in select states. The company’s 13-valent Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV 13) has been selected for immunisation program in certain states, Pfizer Ltd said in a statement.
Globally, pneumococcal disease is one of the leading causes of deaths in children younger than 5 years of age. In India, according to industry sources, around 1.05 lakh children died of pneumococcal pneumonia in 2010.
The PCV 13 vaccines is the most widely used pneumococcal conjugate vaccine in the world, with deployment in over 100 countries’ immunisation program. In India, PCV 13 will be introduced in a multi-dose vial format, Pfizer said.
“With the introduction of PCV 13, we will able to help protect India’s birth cohort of 26 million children from the leading cause of child deaths in the country,” Pfizer India Country Manager S Sridhar said. In the first phase, that will cover around 5.15 million babies, Pfizer Inc will supply the vaccine through UNICEF, under the auspices of Gavi.