Over 2 billion vaccine doses are likely to be available in the August-December period

In a development that will strengthen the country's ongoing fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, India will have 51.6 crore (516 million) vaccine doses available by the end of July, including the over 18 crore (180 million) doses that have already been administered.

Providing this information during a review meeting with states worst affected by the current second wave of Covid-19, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Saturday said that production was being steadily ramped up to cater to the increased demand for vaccine doses.

He also used the occasion to reiterate that 216 crore (over 2 billion) doses of Covid-19 vaccines would be available in the country during the August-December period.

The Union Health Minister pointed out that the Russian Sputnik V vaccine had already been approved for emergency use.

"This along with the slated approval of the new vaccine of Zydus Cadila, Serum Institute of India- Novavax vaccine, Bharat Biotech’s nasal vaccine and the Genova mRNA vaccine will push the availability of COVID vaccines to 216 Cr doses in the August-December period,” he said.

Vardhan was interacting with State Health Ministers and Principal Secretaries and Additional Chief Secretaries of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat states in the presence of Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey.

According to the latest Covid-19 data, these states are depicting a higher growth rate in the number of daily cases, rise in positivity, high mortality and saturation of healthcare capacity.

A common point of consensus among the State Health Ministers was that vaccines had resulted in milder forms of Covid-19, thereby preventing loss of precious lives.