Sinovac Biotech’s Beijing-based vaccine – called CoronaVac – is being offered to caregivers, particularly epidemic prevention workers, civil servants and port inspectors, in Jiaxing City and will eventually be offered to regular citizens, the state media reported Friday, officials citing.
“The vaccine, developed by the Chinese company Sinovac Biotech, is available to people between 18 and 59 years old at a cost of 400 yuan (US $ 59.5) for two shots,” added the Jiaxing Center for Control and Prevention Diseases (CDC) added The vaccine has not been “officially approved for marketing” and is only approved for “urgent needs”.
However, the Jiaxing CDC has not specified what is called “urgent needs”.
The authorities also didn’t say how many people in the city will receive the vaccine, which will be given in two doses 14 to 28 days apart.
The Sinovac vaccine is in late-stage trials in Brazil, Indonesia and Turkey, and the company has announced that an interim analysis of the Phase 3 trial data could be done as early as November, Reuters reported.
In late June, under China’s Vaccine Management Act, the Chinese National Health Commission (NHC) had approved the use of emergency vaccines among people at high risk of contracting the deadly virus, including doctors, frontline pandemic control staff and customs workers – a move considered controversial by experts as the vaccines are still in their early stages. Since July, China has administered such vaccines to hundreds of thousands of people under the program.
On September 25, a senior Chinese health official said Beijing had “the understanding and support” of the World Health Organization (WHO) before the emergency program began. In a statement emailed to HT the next day, WHO said China’s decision to start the program was domestic approval. “These are issued at the discretion of the countries and are not subject to WHO approval,” it says.
By the end of September, 11 Chinese Covid-19 vaccines had entered clinical trials, four of them in phase 3 clinical trials.
Last week, China announced it would join COVAX, an international initiative aimed at ensuring equitable global access to Covid-19 vaccines. This makes China the largest economy to support the initiative to date.
The number of daily cases of Covid-19 in mainland China has fallen dramatically from the highs in February.
The total number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in mainland China is over 85,500, while the death toll remained unchanged at 4,634.
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