Pneumosil has been developed by the Adar Poonawalla-owned SII in collaborations with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the health organisation PATH.
Amid the talks of Covid-19 vaccination, India has got its first indigenously developed vaccine against pneumococcal disease. Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII), which is producing Oxford-AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine under the name of Covishield, has developed Pneumosil against the deadly Pneumococcal disease. Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan launched the Pneumosil vaccine.
What is Pneumococcal disease?
Pneumococcal disease has been categorised as a major contributor to the under-five mortality rate across the world. Taking cognizance of the disease’s widespread fatality, the World Health Organization had in 2018 made recommendations to include the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) in routine childhood immunization programmes in all countries.
What is Pneumosil vaccine?
Pneumosil has been developed by the Adar Poonawalla-owned SII in collaborations with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the health organisation PATH. Dr. Vardhan has termed the development of Pneumosil vaccine as a “significant milestone for the country’s public healthcare”. This will ensure that children are protected better against pneumococcal disease with an effective vaccine, Dr. Vardhan said at the virtual launch function. He said the Serum Institute’s vaccines are used in 170 countries and every third child in the world is immunised with one of its vaccines.
How does Pneumosil vaccine work?
The Pneumosil vaccine works by targetting the pneumococcal bacterium. The pneumococcal bacterium causes pneumonia and other serious life-threatening diseases. These diseases are meningitis and sepsis. It is estimated that the pneumococcal bacterium causes around four lakh deaths in children under five years of age each year worldwide. Serum’s first indigenous PCV will be in a single dose (vial and prefilled syringe) and multi-dose (vial) presentations. Executive Director Dr. Rajeev Dhere said that Pneumosil will be available at an affordable competitive price in the market.