World Health Organization announced on Saturday that it has halted the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine Covaxin, manufactured by India’s Bharat Biotech, through United Nations agencies to allow the producer to update facilities and resolve problems discovered during an inspection.
According to the statement, the WHO asked countries that had received the vaccination to take appropriate precautions, but did not specify what those actions should be.
The vaccine is effective, and there are no safety issues, according to the WHO, but the halt of export production will cause Covaxin supplies to be disrupted. It stated the suspension is in reaction to the findings of a WHO post-emergency use listing (EUL) inspection that took place from March 14 to 22, and that the vaccine company has committed to suspending Covaxin export production, reports Reuters.
A request for comment submitted outside of business hours was not immediately responded to by Bharat Biotech. The vaccine producer announced on Friday that it was slowing manufacturing of Covaxin due to a dip in demand, which coincided with a decrease in illnesses and increased vaccination coverage in the country.
The company has “agreed to comply by addressing the GMP inadequacies and is drafting a corrective and preventive action plan, which will be submitted to the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) and WHO,” according to the WHO.