Hyderabad: Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu has urged the Centre to consider the request of the Telangana government for setting up a vaccine testing and certification laboratory at the Genome Valley in Hyderabad.

Naidu spoke to the Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan and referred to the request made by the Telangana IT Minister, KT Rama Rao in this regard.

Dr. Harsh Vardhan assured the Vice President that he would examine the request from all angles. He also informed the Vice President that there were seven vaccine testing and certification laboratories in the world, including the one at Kasauli in Himachal Pradesh. He said accreditation would be required from an international body for such a facility.

Earlier, KTR had written to Union Health Minister urging him to establish vaccine testing and certification laboratory in Hyderabad on the lines of Central Drug Laboratory in Kasauli.

KTR said Hyderabad is known as the 'Vaccine Capital of the World' manufacturing more than 6 billion doses each year and contributing one-third of the global vaccine output.

KTR also said the vaccines manufactured in Hyderabad are being sent to Central Drug Laboratory at Kasauli in Himachal Pradesh for testing and certification.

The logistics and the time involved were constraining the industry in being a more effective and competitive destination, he said.

KTR noted that Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) is establishing the country's largest national animal resource facility for biomedical research in Genome Valley at Hyderabad.

"The state government has provided the required land for the project free of cost to ICMR to facilitate the establishment of this facility. I am happy to note that this facility already has a mandate of testing and certifying the drug including vaccines, medical devices and certify them on behalf of the Government of India. I would like to request that the establishment of this facility be expedited, and this institution is strengthened further to conduct testing and pre-release certification of Immuno biological meant for human use in India," he said.

Minister said that establishing a Government Medical Store Depot (GMSD) facility at Hyderabad with state-of-the-art data monitoring and the tracking system would go a long way in supporting the vaccine manufacturing efforts in the country. Currently, such facilities are only available in Karnal, Mumbai, Chennai, and Kolkata.

Sumit Kumar Jha

Sumit Kumar Jha is currently a multimedia journalist with Newsmeter. An alumnus of Hyderabad Central University and Amity University, he has interned with The New Indian Express and CGNet Swara. Sumit has also worked with video production houses in Mumbai as an assistant director in shows like 21 Sarfrosh for Discovery Jeet. He is specialised in Video Production. He was also the contributor at PARI network. Hailing from rural Bihar has spent his childhood shifting from places and people. Growing up he felt the need to document the lives and dreams of rural India. A lover of visual storytelling goes around the cities to search for Stories. He primarily reports on civic, human interest and data stories.

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