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COVID-19: NAFDAC warns against fake Astrazeneca vaccine

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NATIONAL Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has advised Nigerians to ensure the Astrazeneca vaccine being administered on them has the original label.

 The agency said the warning was imperative to ensure people did not risk being vaccinated with fake Astrazeneca vaccine.

In a statement signed by the agency’s director general, Mojisola Adeyeye, on Sunday, in Abuja, he explained that the original Oxford Astrazeneca University (AZOU) vaccine, had been contracted to India’s world largest vaccine manufacturer, Serum Institute of India (SIIPL) to produce in large quantity.

“AZOU gave the license of its vaccine to Serum Institute of India PVT Ltd, (SIIPL), to manufacture this vaccine at a commercial scale. SIIPL is the largest vaccine manufacturer in the world and the company got the license by signing the manufacturing agreement.

“SIIPL gave the vaccine the trade name COVISHIELD. It is the result of a cooperation and a technology transfer from AstraZeneca – University of Oxford to SIIPL.

“SIIPL is now the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally.

“More than 1.5 billion doses, which include Polio vaccine, Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hib, BCG, r-Hepatitis B, Measles, Mumps and Rubella,” she said.

Prof. Adeyeye added that the vaccines manufactured by SIIPL were accredited by the World Health Organisation (WHO), and were being used in about 170 countries across the globe in their national immunisation programme.

She said that both COVISHIELD manufactured by SIIPL and COVID-19 vaccine Astrazeneca, manufactured by Astrazeneca/Oxford University vaccine are the same.

According to her, ChAdOx1nCoV- 19 corona virus vaccines (Recombinant), COVISHIELD were granted Emergency Use Listing (EUL) by the World Health Organisation on February 15, and that it were one of the listed vaccines under the COVAX facility.

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