Oxford Covid vaccine becomes first to get emergency use approval in India

India’s drug regulator on Friday approved a coronavirus vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University for emergency use, two sources with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

The approval paves the way for its rollout in the world’s second worst affected country.

A representative of India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO), whose experts are meeting for the second time this week and also considering two other vaccines, declined to comment.

Britain and Argentina have already authorised the vaccine for urgent public use.

India wants to start administering the shots soon.

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It is also considering emergency-use authorisation applications for vaccines made by Pfizer Inc with Germany’s BioNTech, and by India’s Bharat Biotech.

At more than 10 million, India has reported the second highest number of coronavirus cases after the United States, though its rate of infection has come down significantly from a mid-September peak.

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