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India innovated new rotavirus vaccine

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Health Desk: 29 January 2018: A new, cheaper, and heat-stable rotavirus vaccine could prevent thousands of childhood deaths.

Vaccine maker Bharat Biotech announced that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has granted prequalification to its rotavirus vaccine ROTAVAC, used for prevention of infant deaths and hospitalizations due to rotavirus diarrhea.

WHO prequalification is necessary for the UN agencies and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance to purchase vaccines in partnership with developing countries.

"The WHO prequalification will ensure access of the vaccine to almost 100 countries," Bharat Biotech Chairman and MD Krishna Ella told.

This vaccine is innovated and made in India. The true impact of vaccines can be seen when vaccinations are carried out in affected populations, he added.

"ROTAVAC has been supplied to low-income countries at USD one per dose, with the feasibility for further 30 percent price reductions, based on the procurement of around 100 million doses for these countries," Ella said.

The vaccine has been developed as a result of a multi-country - the multi-partner collaborative model for over two decades.