Hyderabad: Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy on Saturday said the Centre has released the fund from PMCARES to establish Vaccine Testing Laboratory in Hyderabad.
The laboratory will be established at the National Institute of Animal Biotechnology, Hyderabad.
"Funds have been released from the PMCARES on March 6, 2021 for establishing two more Vaccine Testing Laboratories. One of the laboratories will be set up at National Centre for Cell Science, Pune, and another at National Institute of Animal Biotechnology, Hyderabad under the Department of Biotechnology," Reddy, who represents Secunderabad in Lok Sabha, said in a statement.
With a focus on vaccine production, the requirement for more testing laboratories has increased in the country.
Currently, there are two Vaccine Testing Laboratories in the country -- the Central Drug Laboratory at Kasauli and National Institute of Biologicals at Noida.
Vaccine Testing Laboratory at Hyderabad is expected to become functional next one month. Considering the fact that Hyderabad is home to many big pharma companies, the setting up of a new Vaccine Testing Laboratory is a big step forward towards the comprehensive development of this sector which will also boost the production of Covid-19 vaccines.
Vaccine Testing Laboratory in Hyderabad has been a key demand of Telangana IT and Industries Minister KT Rama Rao. On June 20, KTR wrote to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan that Hyderabad has emerged as the vaccination capital of the world by producing one-third of the global doses.
He noted that `Covaxin' was developed in Hyderabad. He said there is an urgency to set up a second testing facility. He said Hyderabad is an ideal location to house such a facility given the fact that the city has a large number of vaccine manufacturers.
"The testing of each batch of vaccine produced in the country is being carried out only in the Central Drug Laboratory at Kasauli. And for the entire process of sending the vaccination batch from Hyderabad to Kasauli takes approximately 30-45 days, which is time-consuming, and cost-intensive," he said.
Citing reports, KTR said as per projections of the Centre almost 50 percent of the total Covid vaccine supply between August and December 2021 will be from Hyderabad.
"For the projected capacity of a billion doses in Hyderabad between August to December 2021, having a testing center in Hyderabad could result in accelerated throughput of about 8-10 crore additional vaccine doses per month in the country's overall supply," KTR said.
Earlier also, KTR had written twice to the health Ministry to set up the laboratory.