A vaccine for Coronavirus is very critical for ending the Covid-19 pandemic, and India’s pharmaceutical industry and will play a major role because of its ability to manufacture high-quality vaccines at affordable prices, said Bill Gates, Microsoft co-founder and co-chair of The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF).
The Microsoft co-founder said the world is looking to India for large scale production of the COVID-19 vaccine once it is rolled out because making it available to everyone in a short duration will be challenging. India is also known as the ‘Pharmacy King’ for its high capacity for the production of pharmaceutical drugs. That is why India’s role in the fight against Covid-19 will be very critical!
Hopeful about Having a Vaccine by 2021 first quarter
The Co-Chair and Trustee of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation said he is quite optimistic that by the first quarter of 2021, several of the COVID-19 vaccine candidates will reach the final stage.
“Obviously, all of us want to get a vaccine out in India as fast as we can, once we know that it’s very effective and very safe, and so the plans are coming into focus that sometime next year, it’s very likely that roll-out will take place and take place in fairly big volume,” he said.
During the interview, Bill Gates also said that “Coronavirus is the ‘next biggest thing’ the world has been confronted with after the World War!”
At least 933,721 people in the World have now been killed by the COVID-19 Pandemic
Scientists and pharmaceutical companies globally are racing against time to find a vaccine for the coronavirus pandemic which has killed about 9,33,000 people and infected around 24 million. Some of the vaccine candidates have entered the third and final phase of testing.
Bill Gates also said that the foundation has been having “great discussions” with India’s NITI-Aayog, adding the ICMR is looking at the regulatory aspects of the COVID-19 vaccines. “I’m actually very impressed with how our discussions with the government on these issues and the companies, including the Western companies collaborating with these new companies, that’s all gone very well,” Gates said.
Asked whether India’s economic downturn will impact the implementation of social welfare schemes, Gates said the foundation is a huge believer that investments in health pay off very strongly.
“It’s tragic that all health activities have been so disrupted, and that will lead to increased deaths from other diseases, not just COVID,” he said.”In fact, in many places, and I’m not sure if India will be included in this, but there’s a chance that there would be more deaths from other diseases because of the health disruption than from COVID itself,” he said.