Covid scare: Pak okays Russian vaccine for ‘emergency use’

 

Islamabad: The Pakistan government has approved Russias Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccine for “emergency use authorisation” (EUA) and also gave a go-ahead to a local pharmaceutical company for its import and distribution, an informed official has confirmed.

The Sputnik V has become the third vaccine to be approved for emergency use in the country — the first one being the Oxford University-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine and the second one by Chinese state-owned firm Sinopharm.

“In a meeting conducted by the registration board of the Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan (Drap), another vaccine has also been given EUA which was developed with the backing of Russian Develop­ment Investment Fund,” Dawn news reported on Sunday citing the official as saying. “Russia’s state-owned Sputnik-V has developed a double-dose vaccine, which is administered by syringes,” said the official.

A local pharmaceutical AGP, he said, had been authorised as the sole importer and distributor of the Russian vaccine.

The development comes as Pakistan’s overall coronavirus caseload has increased to 532,412 as of Sunday, while the death toll stood at 11,295.

UK scientists finalise nasal spray

London: A nasal spray which can prevent a coronavirus infection for up to two days is being prepped for mass production by scientists at the University of Birmingham with the hope of having them available over-the-counter in pharmacies in a few months, a UK newspaper report said on Sunday.

Dr Richard Moakes, the study’s lead researcher, told ‘The Sunday Telegraph’ that he is confident in the spray’s formula to help unlock society from social distancing restrictions and “get schools going again”.