Sequel to the circulation of fake COVID-19 vaccines in the country by unscrupulous business men and women, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, has urged Nigerians to ensure that the AstraZeneca vaccines being administer on them have original label from the manufacturer.
The agency emphasised the importance of vigilance on the part of citizens while receiving the jab, in order not to be vaccinated with fake vaccines.
In a press statement signed by the Director General of NAFDAC, Prof. Moji Adeyeye, made available to Pharmanewsonline, she highlighted the distinguishing features of an authentic AstraZeneca vaccine.
Adeyeye disclosed the trade name of the original AstraZeneca vaccine as COVISHIELD™ developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University (AZOU) and commercially manufactured by Serum Institute of India PVT Ltd (SIIPL).
She explained further that COVISHIELD™ is the result of a cooperation and a technology transfer from AstraZeneca – University of Oxford to SIIPL.
For the avoidance of any confusion in the identification process, she however asserted that both COVISHIELD™ manufactured by Serum Institute of India Pvt Ltd and COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca manufactured by AstraZeneca are the same vaccine – ChAdOx1 nCoV- 19 Corona Virus Vaccines (Recombinant).
“AstraZeneca and Oxford University (AZOU) originally developed the ChAdOx1 recombinant adenoviral vector vaccine to be used for prevention of COVID-19 disease. AZOU gave the license of its vaccine to Serum Institute of India PVT Ltd (SIIPL) to manufacture this vaccine at commercial scale.
“SIIPL is the largest vaccine manufacturer in the world and the company got the license by signing manufacturing agreement with AstraZeneca (AZ)/Oxford University to manufacture this vaccine. SIIPL gave the vaccine the trade name COVISHIELD™”, she stated.
The NAFDAC boss said Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd. is now the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally (more than 1.5 billion doses).
“Vaccines manufactured by the Serum Institute are accredited by the World Health Organisation, Geneva and are being used in around 170 countries across the globe in their national immunisation programmes, saving millions of lives throughout the world”she stated.
Recalled that the agency had alerted Nigerians on the circulation of fake COVID-19 vaccines in the country a couple of weeks back, cautioning perpetrators of the severe consequences of their actions if they fail to desist from the act.