COVID-19: ICMR Clinical Trials on BCG Vaccine

The Indian Council of Medical Research is conducting clinical trials to check on the efficacy of Tuberculosis vaccines against COVID-19.

Highlights

The ICMR is to focus on vaccine potential of India in reducing death of COVID-19 infected patients. The trials that will find out the efficacy of BCG Vaccine in COVID-19 patients is to be conducted in conjunction with National Institute for Research in Tuberculosis.

BCG Vaccine

The BCG vaccine is Bacillus Calmette-Guerin. It is a vaccine that uses live attenuated stain of Mycobacterium Bovis. Meaning, the potency of the pathogen is disabled artificially and the characters are retained.

National BCG Vaccination Policy

India is currently following National BCG Vaccination Policy. According to the National Family Health Survey, around 91.9% of children in the age group of 12 to 23 months are receiving the vaccine. The survey also says that India has the capacity of producing 2,800 lakh BCG Vaccine doses in a year.

Background

The researchers of Biomedical sciences of New York Institute of Technology have reported that the countries administered BCG Vaccine Programme has less incidents of COVID-19 as compared to countries that did not administer the programme.

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