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Updated: December 26, 2009 17:32 IST

Swine flu vaccine by March-April next year: Azad

PTI
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Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Gulam Nabi Azad during the inauguration of the modernised M. S. Ramaiah Medical Teaching Hospital in Bangalore on Friday. Photo: K. Bhagya Prakash
The Hindu Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Gulam Nabi Azad during the inauguration of the modernised M. S. Ramaiah Medical Teaching Hospital in Bangalore on Friday. Photo: K. Bhagya Prakash

The swine flu vaccine will be brought out by March or April next year after completion of animal and human trials, Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said on Friday.

“We have already completed the first phase of animal trials (on small animals) and begun the second phase on big animals. We will be completing both the animal and human trials by March and the vaccine will be launched by March end or April first week”, Mr. Azad told reporters after inaugurating the renovated M S Ramaiah Medical Teaching Hospital here.

Noting that swine flu was a global phenomenon not confined to India with the virus having spread to 210 countries, the Union Minister said, “In fact in India, the spread of the pandemic has been far less compared to some western countries.”

“Although we will be late in bringing out the vaccine, we will be launching it after fully testing its efficacy unlike some other countries which have been in a hurry to bring it (vaccine) out without fully testing its effectiveness”, he said.

He said 40 million capsules of Tamiflu had been purchased, out of which 20 million had already been distributed across the country.


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