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Clinical trial of Russian vaccine to begin in city

Kolkata: After Covaxin, the clinical trials of Russian Sputnik V vaccine will begin at a city hospital in January next year. ICMR-NICED was the first institute to start a vaccine trial in the state. The Phase-III trial of the indigenously-prepared Covaxin was launched on December 2.

According to Health department sources, a private hospital off EM Bypass will conduct the clinical trials of Sputnik V.

In the phase, around 100 volunteers will receive the vaccine shot. Doctors and other experts in the field will examine the health condition of the volunteers, who will receive the shot.

The process has already begun. The hospital has already prepared a database featuring the names of the volunteers. Unlike the NICED—where people voluntarily chose to undergo the trials— in case of Sputnik V, the private hospital will administer the vaccine on those whose names have been listed in the database.

People will have no option of voluntarily receiving the vaccine. The medical team of the hospital along with the designated members of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and the representative from the vaccine company will monitor and observe the health conditions of those who will undertake the clinical trials.

A clear guideline will be issued to those, who take the doses as certain restrictions will be imposed on them. One will not be allowed to consume alcohol for 45 days after receiving the shot.

Sources in the health department also said 8 institutions including 2 government hospitals are expected to conduct trials of the indigenous vaccine. The School of Tropical Medicine will also conduct the final phase trials of Covovax.

It had already received clearance from the state health department. A senior official of the private hospital, where the Sputnik V trails will be performed, claimed that in this case they would not require complicated cold chain management. The vaccine could be preserved in a temperature varying between 2 and 8 degree Celsius.

Meanwhile, the Health department has already set up infrastructure and cold chain facilities to stock various Covid vaccines.

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