The Bharat Biotech COVID-19 vaccine, also known as Covaxin, is an inactivated virus vaccine that was authorized for emergency use in India to help curb the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Like Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine, an inactivated virus vaccine is made by using a virus that has been killed or inactivated, so it cannot cause the disease it is intended to prevent. In the case of the Bharat Biotech vaccine, the virus is the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19, and it has been inactivated by a chemical process. When the vaccine is injected into the body, it triggers an immune response, including the production of antibodies, that will help protect against future COVID-19 infection.
The Bharat Biotech COVID-19 vaccine was developed by the Indian company Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the National Institute of Virology (NIV). It was authorized for emergency use by the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) in January 2021, following clinical trials involving more than 25,800 participants. The data from the phase 3 clinical trials of the vaccine has not been published yet and the overall efficacy of the vaccine is not known.
The Bharat Biotech vaccine is given as a series of two doses, with the second dose administered 28 days after the first. The vaccine has been shown to be effective in people of all ages, including those over 55, who are at an increased risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19.
Like all vaccines, the Bharat Biotech COVID-19 vaccine can cause side effects, although these are generally mild and short-lived. Common side effects include pain and redness at the injection site, fatigue, headache, muscle and joint pain, chills, fever, and nausea. These side effects generally go away on their own within a few days.
The Bharat Biotech COVID-19 vaccine has been authorized for emergency use in India and it has been given to millions of people in the country. It’s important to note that the vaccine has been authorized for emergency use while phase 3 clinical trials are still ongoing, which is a rare situation.
The Bharat Biotech COVID-19 vaccine is an important tool in the fight against the ongoing pandemic, and it is part of a comprehensive strategy that includes testing, contact tracing, and other public health measures to slow the spread of the virus.
It’s important to mention that the Bharat Biotech COVID-19 vaccine is not a cure for COVID-19, but it can help to prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death from the disease. Vaccination is a crucial step in controlling the pandemic and helping to return to a sense of normalcy.