Pfizer’s 13-valent PCV selected in India’s immunisation programme
Pharmaceutical firm Pfizer’s 13-valent Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV 13) has been selected in India’s immunisation programme in selected states.
Globally, pneumococcal disease is one of the leading causes of deaths in children younger than five years.
According to 2015 Farooqui article, nearly 105,000 children succumbed to pneumococcal pneumonia in India in 2010.
In the first phase, the programme will include nearly 5.15 million babies in India, which is approximately 20% of India’s total birth cohort.
Pfizer India manager S Sridhar said: “The Government of India has made reaching every child with vaccines as a key priority.
“With the introduction of PCV 13, we will able to help protect India’s birth cohort of 26 million children from the leading cause of child deaths in the country.
“Pfizer remains committed to supporting the government and its partners in expanding the introduction of PCV 13 in the country, so much that every child in India gets access to protection from pneumococcal diseases.”
Pfizer noted that PCV 13, one of the widely used pneumococcal conjugate vaccines, is deployed in more than 100 countries’ immunisation programme and includes a majority of serotype coverage that are prevalent in India.
Epidemiological studies carried out in India have confirmed the effectiveness of the PCV 13.
The vaccine will be introduced in a multi-dose vial format in the country and has been specially designed by Pfizer to improve the effectiveness of public immunisation programmes.
During the first phase, PCV 13 will be supplied directly by Pfizer through UNICEF.